High Intensity Multi-pass Magnetic Softening Technology
Hard water affects 85% of all US water systems, fouling and damaging water fixtures, pipes, and equipment. AkwaMag fundamentally alters the binding characteristics of calcium lime scale (the "hard" part of hard water) through a patent pending passive magnetic process that neutralizes calcium carbonate at the molecular level, making it soften and lose its electrical attraction to exposed surfaces. Calcium carbonate mostly exist in two crystalline structures, aragonite and calcite. Calcite conglomerates easily and creates scale. Aragonite is significantly less prone to conglomeration, allowing it to flow along with the water. Electron microscope imaging clearly show that the untreated water contains significantly less aragonite clusters than the magnetically treated water. The founder's background in magnetic materials research enables us to employ a unique magnetic arrangement to conserve magnet materials by 50% while producing 100 times more magnetic flux density. The AkwaMag strength is equivalent to an alternative magnetic softener equipped with 120lbs of high grade magnets or an electric (pulsating) softener equipped with a 400lbs electromagnetic coil. The strength of the AkwaMag allows it to work where other magnetic systems don't.
The GreenBox: Wastewater Remediation and Energy Generation
Currently, wastewater treatment solutions for ammonia (biological and chemical treatments) consume a significant amount of energy, require significant investments, are large and not easily adaptable to tighter emissions regulations. In addition, current methods do not scale-down well for non-point source pollution, typical of rural areas and leading to algae bloom. For this reason, the EPA has limited the nitrate contamination level in drinking water to 10 mg/l and the algae bloom problem has caused the EPA to consider reducing this limit to a lower value. Ohio University's patented ammonia electrolysis is the only technology that allows the direct conversion of ammonia into benign pure nitrogen gas and pure fuel grade hydrogen gas. The process, also known as the “Ammonia GreenBox” is compact, consumes less energy, reduces capital and operational costs and is amenable to regulatory changes via process control. Finally, the GreenBox provides an opportunity to generate hydrogen for use within the wastewater treatment plant infrastructure. As megatrends in population growth and urbanization continue to increase, the GreenBox provides the opportunity to retrofit and improve on current remediation plants, while also aiding in the next generation of plants that can handle more waste output from municipalities.
Direction-Sensitive Radiation Detection System for Unmanned Vehicles
Finding and identifying radiation sources or illicit special nuclear materials (SNM) are vital to such efforts as emergency response and border security. It requires a radiation detection system capable of locating any radioisotopes present in the surrounding area in a very short-time operation. Current hand-held detectors do not have a directional capability and the source must be found by carrying the detector over the suspect area a number of times and observing changes in count rate. This is a radiation detection technology for unmanned vehicles to locate and identify radiation sources. In an autonomous searching system, directional information collected from the detection system is used by the motion or flight control unit to guide the vehicle toward the radiation source autonomously. The direction-sensitive radiation detection system (DSRD) indicates the direction of the source of the radiation. Once near the source, an energy-sensitive radiation detector generates an energy histogram, identifies characteristic spectral features, and ultimately identifies the radioisotopes present at its location. This information is wirelessly transmitted to human observers.
Economical long-distance transport of liquids/InfinitPipe®
InfinitPipe® is a revolutionary, patent pending technology, based on fiber reinforced polymer (FRP), developed by Prof. Mo Ehsani following decades of R&D and with support from the US National Science Foundation and the US Department of Agriculture. The innovative features of this technology allow fast, low cost, onsite manufacturing of a continuous (joint-less) pipe, eliminating both the cost and time to ship pipes from factories; thus, making a truly innovative solution that is economically and environmentally feasible to implement. This technology is currently being developed and deployed for agriculture, mining, rejuvenating the coral of the Great Barrier Reef (https://www.engineersaustralia.org.au/News/engineer-proposes-concept-solving-great-barrier-reef-bleaching) and other applications.
Innovative approach to Desalination based on renewable energy: low-cost, scalable, readily deployable
Two abundant natural resources are seawater and solar. This technology provides a novel method for utilizing solar for desal with substantially reduced costs. Current use of renewables like solar PV or photo-thermal PT for desal are high cost. Even with dropping PV prices, the energy requirements of electricity for desal are so high, that PV is expensive. For PT, some approaches utilize advanced coatings such as TiNOx, but again, the cost is too high. Our novel approach addresses these issues by innovating with very low-cost materials, coatings, and films, to achieve a dramatically better conversion of light to process energy, expanding on already proven desal modes. The result is substantial reductions in up-front costs and running costs by more than 10x. The inventor and partner are advanced materials experts and had previously successfully launched an advanced coatings company, with two term sheets and >$20M in funding. Given the growing crisis for potable water, the potential impact is substantial. Already cities like Johannesburg are running out of water. Our approach utilizes abundant resources in an eco-friendly mode, addressing this crisis at a low cost that will allow rapid and broad implementation.
Algorithms for Rapid, On-Site Characterization of Soil Chemical and Physical Properties
Portable X-ray fluorescence (PXRF) spectrometry is a proximal sensing technique whereby low-power X-rays are used to make elemental determinations in soils. The technique is rapid, portable, and provides multi-elemental analysis with results generally comparable to traditional laboratory-based techniques. Elemental data from PXRF can then be either used directly for soil parameter assessment (e.g., total Ca, total Fe) or as a proxy for predicting other soil parameters of interest (e.g., soil cation-exchange capacity [CEC], soil reaction, soil salinity) via simple or multiple linear regression. Importantly, PXRF does have some limitations that must be considered in the context of soil analysis, but are addressed and solved by the disclosed technology.
FARM BOX: Reconnecting to Agriculture using Technology
FARM BOX is a novel growing unit that creates a controlled environment optimized to grow plants in a hydroponic system. The unit includes a large static frame, movable frames, perforated floor system, growing towers, a closed loop system for water circulation, an energy system powered by solar panel and battery and sensors for an environment control system. Any user interaction happens by pulling out movable parts of the box, optimizing the space and allowing easy access to the plants and the components. The system is portable, enclosed, autonomous, and fully controllable. A typical FARM BOX can produce the vegetable consumption of 11 people with low cost and minimal footprint (35 square feet). The unit is scaled for a private consumer, whether a home or restaurant.
Colorimetric Sensing of Amines using Furfural-derived Molecules
An affordable and easily synthesized indicator that can be applied to monitor reaction progress in a system using only one inexpensive and non-toxic reagent. This adaptable colorimetric indicator provides easy access to highly sensitive and selective detection of amines for a wide range of applications including detection of amines that are volatilized through the degradation of meat and seafood to determine if the food is safe to consume. For the purposes of assessing the freshness of food proteins such as meat or seafood, the indicator can be a test strip or label that is placed near or on the protein, or integrated into the packaging of the protein, with elements on the label that change color as amines are produced by bacterial activity. Other applications include being used to detect amines that are present in explosives and their associated residues, are present in water contaminated by pharmaceutical byproducts, or that are volatilized as a result of biological activity or signaling such as a wound becoming infected.
Graphene-based Formaldehyde Sensor
PDDA and Formaldehyde dehydrogenase are functionalized on the surface of graphene through layer by layer method. The structure of immobilized enzyme with polyelectrolyte (PDDA) used as linker molecules on graphene surface is capable of initiating enzymatic reaction. Also, it allows hydrogen ions, which are produced by the specific enzymatic reaction, to reach the graphene surface so that graphene can sense the ions. Graphene’s larger surface area and high electrical mobility makes its ideal material for sensors with high sensitivity and quick electrical response The sensor of approximately 10 mm by 13 mm was formed on a single SiO2 wafer. the response time is under 60 seconds. The detection limit is as low as 5.9 bbp. The detection limit is comparable to that of the current optical method but it is much more compact, which makes it ideal to be integrated into a portable device.
UVC-LED based water disinfection
Water disinfection using UVC has been used commercially since 1950'ies mainly using mercury based UV fluorescent lamps. In 1990 Japanese researchers managed to transmit UVC from LED, Nobel prize in 2014. Watersprint is utilizing the new UVC-LED technology and its advantages to make products in the water disinfection area. The primary advantages with UVC-LEDs are, small size, energy efficient since no heat up time is needed and the LEDs can be turned on in milli seconds, robust, low maintenance and environmental friendly. UN's Minamata convention is now ratified by 90+ countries meaning exceptions using mercury in different products will be phased out. A new replacement technology is needed.