Chemists at Cardiff University have created a catalyst for instant water disinfection based on palladium and gold particles.
The problem of purifying drinking water does not cease to be relevant, so scientists are looking for ways to make this process fast and effective.
During their work, chemists pursued a different goal: they wanted to use a catalyst to produce hydrogen peroxide directly during water purification.
However, after they observed the results of testing their development, they found that during the synthesis of H2O2, many other molecules containing oxygen arise, which interact tens and hundreds of millions of times more actively with microbes than peroxide and chlorine.
Such a level of bactericidal activity of these compounds, as noted by Hutchins and his colleagues, allows for almost instant water purification from microbes, spores and other organic contaminants that can negatively affect human health.
We have implemented the idea that you can instantly purify water using only a catalyst, contaminated liquid and electricity. In this respect, our invention is vastly superior to commercial bleach or hydrogen peroxide disinfectants.
Graham Hutchins, author and professor at Cardiff University
Technically, for cleaning, you need to immerse a small amount of catalyst nanoparticles in water and pass a current through it, as a result of which, after 30 seconds, all traces of microbes will completely disappear from the water.
Among the main advantages, the authors note that their catalyst can be used almost indefinitely: metal nanoparticles are not consumed and remain stable.