The Consortium for Electro Coagulation for Water Recycling in the Textile Industry (ECWRTI) has charted the prospects of the innovative EColoRO concept for extensive wastewater re-use in textile industry. Pilot studies underpin the technological opportunity for ‘future-proofing’ the industry with respect to water usage. It has also become clear that local circumstances and regulatory issues strongly determine the conditions for practical application.
The EColoRO concept offers a solution to treat the wastewater of textile industry with a minimal use of chemicals and energy. By doing so, nearly 70% of the reclaimed wastewater can be reused in the textile manufacturing process. The core of the concept is formed by Electro Coagulation, an additive-free process to remove the majority of all pollutants, colorants and chemicals. It is based upon the release of Fe3+ ions from an iron source by means of a low voltage electrolytic action. The ions coagulate and flocculate with impurities present in the water so that these can be removed by means of sedimentation or flotation.
Subsequently, the water is passed through ultrafiltration and reverse osmosis membranes, after which it can be re-used. Pollutants thus end up in the sludge (from flocculation) and the concentrated brine (from membrane filtration). As a result, EColoRO creates new approaches for water treatment and water management within a factory.