Rohm and Haas Company announced a worldwide price increase of four to six percent across their range of ion exchange resins, adsorbents and catalysts. The increase was effective October 1, 2006 or as contracts allow. The increase is needed to cover continued increases in energy and raw material costs. ?
Royal Spring Water Inc. entered an exclusive one-year agreement with Icho Group Inc. (Mia Water Company) as their private label water bottler, reported PRNewswire. The mid six-figure contract was projected to reach two million dollars in the next few months, when the private label is launched in the Middle East and Europe. ?
AgION Technologies received Frost & Sullivan’s Antimicrobial Additive Technology Innovation of the Year Award in recognition of the company’s innovation in offering tailored solutions to its customers and contributions toward a microbe-free world. ?
Membrana announced an agreement with Hager + Elsässer GmbH relating to the latter’s European patent EP 0 899 239 for water treatment. The agreement enables Membrana and its customers to supply the contactors to final end users. ?
GE Money’s Retail Sales Finance unit announced a multi-year agreement with Water Master, Inc. to provide consumer financing for its 230 dealers nationwide. The GE Money AquaVantage card will be available to Water Master customers for the purchase of home water treatment systems and accessories. ?
Sylvan Source signed agreements with premium appliance distributors John Tisdel Fine Appliances and Maroline Distributing, Inc. to represent the M-600 home water system. The agreements will increase market exposure in the midwestern states and Canada. ?
Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal reported that 3M Company filed suit against Colorox Company’s Brita Products division and a unit of Sears Holdings Corporation over water purification system patents. The patent issue is tied to a cartridge-based filtration system, Aqua-Pure water filters, produced by 3M subsidiary CUNO Inc. which was purchased last year. The lawsuit asks the court to bar Sears from selling products that 3M believes infringe on its existing patents. ?
ACM expands operations
ACM Technologies (sister company to ResinTech, Inc.) has started construction of its new 15,000 sqare foot regeneration facility in Forest Hill, Md. The firm’s expanded operations will offer a broad range of products and services, including F006 hazardous waste resin regeneration, EDM resin regeneration and dedictated arsenic regeneration to customers of ResinTech’s patent-pending ASM-10-HP arsenic removal resin product. The new facility is expected to be completed by June 2007. For more information, go to the website at www.resintech.com
Price increase and new division for Dow
Dow announced an increase in the price of all DOWEX™ ion exchange resin, adsorbent and catalyst products. The increase will average five percent across the product line, globally and reflects a need to continue to offset high costs in energy and raw materials. Customers will be contacted by their local sales representatives with specific product and price details; the increase was effective October 15, 2006, or as contracts allow.
Dow also announced the formation of Dow Water Soutions, a business unit comprised of world-class brands enabling component technologies designed to advance the science of desalination, water purification, contaminant removal and water recycling.
New membrane technology improves RO
Researchers at Virginia Tech discovered how to make a polymer membrane that will improve the process of reverse osmosis (RO), reported the Collegiate Times. Previously, the polymer material in thin film composite membranes typically used in RO broke down with the use of chlorine for disinfection. The new chlorine-resistant filter will make it easier and faster to produce freshwater from saltwater. The discovery created a stronger polymer structure that improves the process and allows water to be disinfected during the separation process. The researchers presented a paper on the discovery, detailing how the membrane is made and will be used. The new membrane will affect the use of RO in many different fields, making it easier to supply potable water in places where saltwater is more plentiful than freshwater or water has to be recycled.
Aquathin gains certification and marking
AQUATHIN®, with the assistance of the Florida Manufacturing Extension Partnership, obtained the European Conformity (CE) marking required for exported products to gain access to the European Union (EU) market. The firm also achieved ISO-9001:2000 certification; the ISO procedures create uniform practices within a company that meet international standards and the requirements are the same worldwide. The Center for International Trade Regulation Assistance (CITRA) of Duquesne University, Pa. reviewed product drawings and specifications to ensure compliance with EU regulations and helped the firm prepare documentation proving conformity to the CE marking directives. “We knew we needed the CE marking and ISO-9001:2000 certification to achieve a new level in our business and retain our world-class reputation,” said Alfred (Alfie) Lipshultz, President of Aquathin.
Manufacturing plant operational
FilmTec Corporation announced the successful start-up of its state-of-the-art manufacturing facility at Edina, Minn. The expansion provides increased capacity and improved product performance of the firm’s RO membranes to meet growing demand. The facility provides more than double the production capacity of the company’s existing plant. It contains additional membrane lines and new fabrication cells, adding a higher degree of automation to FilmTec’s already automated production capabilities.
MetaMateria acquires nano manufacturer
MetaMateria Partners, LLC announced the acquisition of Pourous Ceramic Shapes LLC, including all technology and Cell-Pore™ products. The proprietary technology enables the manufacture of lightweight ceramic products with controlled porosity that can be used for highly efficient, cost-effective water filtration and remediation applications. Already commercialized for small applications, the ceramic technology is currently in development for larger scale, nanotechnology-enabled bioremediation, chemical absorption and filtration processes. Under the terms of the acquisition, Cell-Pore products are now sold directly by the new owner.
Recouping losses after the soda ban
According to Health News Digest, schools around the country have lost income from vending machines after a ban on soda took effect, impacting their ability to fund field trips, school dances and athletic programs. Using creative money-making and saving solutions, they are finding ways to make sure that what’s good for students is not too hard on the bottom line. St. Mary’s Academy in St. Mary’s, Kan. initially supplied purified drinking water in its kitchen and dorms in five-gallon water bottles, spending an average of $2,000-2,500 per month. Working with local Culligan dealer in Topeka, the school transitioned to RO point of use (POU) systems, with a larger 100-gallon capacity model in the kitchen. Nearly $12,000 per year in projected savings will be used for essential programs.
US EPA lowers safe water performance goal
According to AWWA Waterweek, US Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) officials are backing away from a 2008 target that 95 percent of community water systems (CWS) provide water that meets all health-based standards. Officials propose to replace what they termed the ideal with the more realistic level of 91 percent by 2011. A midyear report indicated the current performance against the goal remains high at 88.4 percent. It also noted that the program is falling short of its 2006 goal of 90.9 percent. The report does, however, recognize “substantial strides forward” in meeting goals for the percent of population getting water that meets all standards, noting that it has risen from 79 percent in 1993 “to current levels which are in the 90 percent range and include even more requirements to protect public health.”
In other news, US EPA’s Engineering and Analytical Support Branch recommended Hach LDO Method 10360 (Luminescence Dissolved Oxygen) for measurement of DO and determination of biochemical oxygen demand in wastewater under the National Pollution Discharge Elimination System program (NPDES).
Arsenic removal technology selected
Severn Trent’s SORB 33® arsenic removal technology and Bayoxide® arsenic removal media have been selected by Arizona American Water Company for use at six water treatment facilities. The City of El Paso, Texas also selected the technology for three of its facilities. The process and technology to reduce arsenic contamination has been commercially proven to effectively and economically meet the stringent government standard of 10 ppb across a range of treatment applications. The media has been permitted for use by health and environmental agencies in 18 states.
Waterite opens Filtrex
Waterite Technologies, Inc. opened its new Olympic Filtrex sales division facility, representing the merger of Olympic Water Conditioning Ltd. (acquired in June 2006) and the introduction of Filtrex to the company’s central sales region. The new warehouse, sales office and showroom are located adjacent to the firm’s central distribution center in Winnipeg, Canada. This division will serve Olympic’s traditional water treatment and plumbing dealers, promote the Filtrex product line to institutional, industrial, commercial and municipal end users and serve residential retail customers. It now has an operational service bay to provide repairs on all makes of softeners, drinking water filters and other water treatment equipment.
Water and protein interaction seen
No one has ever seen exactly how water molecules interact with proteins until now, reported PhysOrg.com. Researchers led by Ohio State University physicist Dongping Zhong, Assistant Professor of physics, revealed these interactions for the first time and reported the results in the current issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The project may eventually explain how water helps enable life-supporting biological functions such as protein folding or enzyme catalysis. The early result ends decades of controversy on what happens in the microscopic realm where water and proteins meet. The controversy stemmed from researchers across multiple disciplines using different methods to study the problem, resulting in different answers on the speed with which these essential biochemical reactions take place. The answer was revealed in the lab: water molecules do move fast on their own, but they slow down, to a speed midway between the nanosecond and picosecond scale, to connect with proteins.
Desal upgrade in Aruba
Aquatech International Corporation received an order from Aruba’s Water-En Energiebedrijf (WEB) for 14 remineralization calcite filters to supplement the existing multi-stage flash desalination equipment. The filters and equipment are supplied by the firm’s Industrial Concentration and Desalination (ICD) division based in Milwaukee, Wis. The filters will add mineral salts to the desalinated water thus making it suitable for human consumption. Existing old barns that used endangered coral rocks as a calcium-enriching media in gravity flow configuration will be replaced. The new pressure filters use graded calcite media, enabling the backwash and cleaning cycles that result in improved water hygiene. The filters are projected to be operational by June 2007.
Harvey completes building
Harvey Softeners Ltd. of Surrey (UK) completed construction of a new facility adjacent to its existing 27-year old factory. The company moved operations into the new building recently and the old building was demolished to provide access to the new plant. Owner Harvey Bowden took part in the demolition, noting he had wanted to get rid of the building for 25 years.
Danone acquires Aqua d’Or
Groupe Danone announced it has acquired 49 percent of the Danish bottled water company Aqua d’Or for an undisclosed sum, according to Forbes. Aqua d’Or, formed in 2000, had 30 percent sales growth last year. It is the market leader for bottled still water in Denmark with a 50 percent share in value terms and is number two in the Swedish market. Aqua d’Or’s current management will retain the other 51 percent stake and continue to run the business. Danone said Scandinavia’s bottled water market has ‘promising scope for development’ as per capita consumption is one-fifth that of western Europe.
UNESDA partners 2007 beverage innovation awards
UNESDA, the Union of European Beverages Associations, has agreed to partner the 2007 Beverage Innovation Awards, announced at the end of August by Zenith International Publishing. The awards present a unique opportunity to celebrate innovation in the non-alcoholic beverages industry. The ten categories are in two sections: an online product innovation section inviting votes from the industry at www.beverage-innovation.com and a judging panel section with categories ranging from sustainability, ingredients and health to packaging and marketing. Winners will be announced and awards presented during the third InnoBev Global Soft Drinks Congress in March 2007. The event will be held at the Westin Palace Hotel, Madrid from 6 to 8 March 2007 and will follow the same formula as the two previous events in Amsterdam and Budapest, with delegates from 50 countries.
PepsiCo entering Indian water market
Financial Express reported that PepsiCo India proposed the launch of its own enhanced water products by extending its Aquafina range in a bid to pre-empt Tata Tea from entering the domestic market with the recently acquired Energy Brands’ Glaceau range of enhanced water. According to industry analysts, major players in the Indian packaged water business want to offer value-additions to woo new consumers. PepsiCo will be the first fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) major player to enter this niche sector in India’s Rs 1200 crore packaged water business. Yet another FMCG player, Parle Bisleri, is conducting research before entering the energy water sector in the region.
Multi-Pure opens China plant
Multi-Pure Drinking Water Systems of Nevada has established a plant in Shanghai, China to manufacture high-quality solid carbon block filters and drinking water treatment devices designed for residential POU applications. Shanghai Multi-Pure (Shengchun) Drinking Water Appliance Co., Ltd., is applying the same manufacturing technology and innovative solutions developed by Multi-Pure to produce filters of many different sizes, shapes and performance capabilities. The NSF/ANSI Standards 42 and 53 compliant plant has the capacity to meet production requirements ranging from 100 to millions of carbon block filters per year.
GE plans R&D center
GE Water and Process Technologies recently announced that it will set up a world-scale global R&D center in Singapore and will invest S$130 (US$82 million) over the next 10 years. Comprised of five centers of excellence, the facility will be hosted at the National University of Singapore (NUS). GE plans to employ 100 researchers to develop concepts into products and solutions. This is the island nation’s first large-scale R&D center for water technologies built by a foreign company. The water technologies industry is a strategic growth area. Singapore plans to account for three to five percent of the global water market by 2018.
Konzen partners with Applied Water Solutions
Konzen Group (Singapore) and Applied Water Solutions of Burlington, Mass., announced a global partnership to offer the latest in high purity water technology for multiple industries and desalination projects around the world. The companies will combine their technologies and industry experience to provide local technical support and high quality service in membrane technologies. The partnership will support consulting, project management and manufacturing by an experienced multinational team and strong network of providers.