By substituting a single atom in a molecule widely used to purify water, researchers at Albuquerque’s Sandia National Laboratories say they have created a more effective decontaminant with a shelf life superior to products currently on the market. The molecule may have applications in process water uses as well.

Sandia researchers May Nyman and Tom Stewart take a water sample on the banks of the Rio Grande. The two developed a material-based approach to purifying water that has generated commercial interest.


By substituting a single atom in a molecule widely used to purify water, researchers at Albuquerque’s Sandia National Laboratories say they have created a more effective decontaminant with a shelf life superior to products currently on the market.

Sandia has applied for a patent on the material, which removes bacterial, viral and other organic and inorganic contaminants from river water destined for human consumption and from wastewater treatment plants prior to returning water to the environment.

“Human consumption of ’challenged’ water is increasing worldwide as preferred supplies become more scarce,” says Sandia principal investigator May Nyman. “Technological advances like this may help solve problems faced by water treatment facilities in both developed and developing countries.”

The molecule may have applications in process water uses as well. For more information, visit www.sandia.gov.

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