Water treatment breakthrough: first laser-drilled filter tested

Water treatment breakthrough: first laser-drilled filter tested

laser hole making process

Fraunhofer ILT launched the SimConDrill project, in which the world's first laser-cut microplastic filter is produced in close partnership with leading industrial companies. Now the product is being tested in real conditions at wastewater treatment plants. In perspective technology can be a breakthrough in the field of water purification and treatment.

With the help of the thinnest laser beam, 59 million holes with a diameter of only 10 microns are made in the filter. Fine drilling technology originated at the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology (ILT). The engineers did not stop there and plan to expand the scale of production. They are also open to visitors - anyone can visit the stand under the name Fraunhofer A6.441 within the Laser World of Photonics to learn more about the technology and the filter itself.

Why bother drilling tens of millions of holes in an ordinary water filter? The problem is that even modern wastewater treatment plants still cannot properly clean wastewater from microscopic plastic impurities. Due to their small size, they pass through the smallest filters without any resistance. However, with the advent of the development in question, everything can change, and particles with a diameter of more than 10 microns will not be able to pass.
Drilling 59 million microscopic holes is not an easy or quick task. At the same time, engineers have found a way to maximize filter fabrication efficiency using laser technology. To do this, a multi-beam laser is used, which at the same time drills not one hole, but several at once, which make up the matrix. It is pre-generated by a computer and assembled through a complex optical system.

The problem of cleaning water from plastic is acute today

Fraunhofer ILT personnel were able to cut 144 holes simultaneously using ultra-short pulses on a TruMicro 5280 Femto Edition laser machine. The use of this technology multiplies the speed of production, which will greatly help with mass production.

In terms of mass production, researchers are partnering with six industrial companies right now to figure out how to integrate a unique laser drilling method into manufacturing equipment and speed up the process by 20 to 25 times. As soon as this task is solved, we can see the serial production of microplastic filters.

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  1. Sergey Latyshev (Serge) April 7 2022 12: 21
    This instead of news about the operation?
    Foreign company, foreign technology, one more to hundreds of all kinds of filters, which we hurt when we see live
    1. OMGvold Offline OMGvold
      OMGvold (Santan) April 7 2022 13: 30
      This is to broaden your horizons, and the problem of dirty water is all over the world, not only in your village. There are technologies that have no boundaries. Yes, in principle, this applies to all technologies. Otherwise, one country would have had nuclear weapons. Others would simply carve hammers out of stones. And so progress is made.
      1. Sergey Latyshev (Serge) April 7 2022 18: 05
        Without being interested at all, I met about 10 descriptions of new filter technologies.
        In real life, there are probably hundreds and hundreds of them. And they are applied, or lie in reserve, somewhere out there, far away ...
    2. Old Skeptic Offline Old Skeptic
      Old Skeptic (Old Skeptic) April 7 2022 17: 18
      And they haven’t said yet: how much money for this crap ?, and how often does it clog? And so the thing is necessary, though perhaps useless.
  2. zzdimk Offline zzdimk
    zzdimk 20 May 2022 18: 19
    The technology of making holes in something is ahead of the technology of cleaning blockages in these holes. Always.