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Polymer-Based Filter to Help Oil Spill Cleanup

In the first bit of optimistic news we’ve heard in a while about the tragic BP oil spill, a chemical engineer from the University of Pittsburgh might have a simple solution to help clean up the Gulf Coast waters.

Di Gao, a chemical and petroleum engineering professor at the Swanson School of Engineering, has created a polymer-coated cotton filtration system that efficiently separates oil from water. The coating is specially formulated to attract water and repel oil. Watch him test the system below:

YouTube Preview Image

To apply his solution to the oil spill cleanup, Gao “envisions large, trough-shaped filters that could be dragged through the water to capture surface oil.” We hope his plan soon becomes a reality.

Image: notsogoodphotography/Flickr

4 Responses to “Polymer-Based Filter to Help Oil Spill Cleanup”

  1. [...] Polymer-Based Filter to Help Oil Spill Cleanup [...]

  2. To tell you the polymer used is a bio degradable polysaccharide call Guar gum, obtained naturally. thanks for share. nice post.

  3. Thanks for the info!

  4. [...] engineers now can fully focus on cleanup efforts. Already researchers are pioneering new oil-water separation methods, and engineers like Eric Hoek are busy evaluating these technologies and putting them to good [...]

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