Today's increasingly stringent environmental
regulations are imposing new and costlier treatment requirements
on industrial waste. The concentration and recovery of acids from
waste effluents, while being a means of waste purification, can
also lead to increased competitiveness for companies in areas like
steel treatment and copper and zinc refining. The Japanese have
already made considerable progress in this field.
The aim of this project was to develop
electrodialysis ion-exchange membranes and the necessary associated
industrial equipment for the recovery and purification of acids
from waste effluent. Whereas the initial plan called for the creation
of 15 new membranes, 75 were ultimately developed. Applications
in a wide variety of fields have been envisaged.
Pilot studies have been carried out in
Canadian and French SMEs and a new Brite Euram project is currently
underway. The new membranes have significantly raised the state
of the art and orders have already been received from Japanese customers.