Indian Scientists Turn Sugar Industry Waste Into Next-Gen Battery Material
(Sugar News) Indian scientists have demonstrated that waste water from some of the dirtiest industrial processes can be turned into a carbon source for preparation of energy storage materials.
Researchers led by scientists from Bhavnagar-based Central Salt and Marine Research Institute (CSMRI) have used sugar and distillery industry waste to develop functionalized carbon material which has energy storage properties. Such electrochemical material can be used to make electrodes, sensors and supercapacitors which find applications in digital devices.
“Instead of dumping into landfills and generating leachate, solid sludge can be activated with a metal precursor and calcined at elevated temperatures under inert atmosphere. The inherent presence of sulphur and nitrogen containing impurities in the sludge acts as dopants and in combination with the metal precursor it can provide an alternate charge storage mechanism to the material,” Dr Ramavatar Meena, one of the co-authors of the group told India Science Wire. The study results have been published in Journal of Hazardous Materials.
The methodology developed can be used for wastewaters with high ‘total organic carbon’ content generated by other polluting industries such as tanneries. Besides extraction of carbon material, a combination of adsorption and low pressure reverse osmosis (RO) can be used to further treat wastewater making it reusable in sugar industries as well as for irrigation purposes. “Our aim is to reduce dependency of sugar industries and distilleries on fresh water by making them self-sufficient in terms of water consumption,” researchers said. Studies are also underway to recover potable water from this highly contaminated wastewater. READ MORE