2020 | Singapore | Yiu Yi Hin Kinsey, Low Jeen Liang

A Novel Electrochemical Enhancement of Activated Carbon Fibre for the Purification of Contaminated Pharmaceutical Effluents

Water issue adressed: Too dirty

A conventional method of wastewater treatment is adsorption by activated carbon, a highly porous material. However, treatment by activated carbon becomes less sustainable when applied to the treatment of pharmaceutical wastewater. In this study, a novel electrochemically enhanced form of activated carbon fibre (ACF) for the treatment of acetone, a common pharmaceutical pollutant, was investigated. With just 1.0V of electricity applied, the effectiveness and reusability of ACF was more than doubled. Furthermore, due to the method’s low energy consumption, treatment is extremely cost-efficient. Electrochemically enhanced ACF can even be employed in a combined treatment system which integrates electro-sorption and electrochemical regeneration into one central chamber, allowing wastewater to be continuously purified without any lag time between treatment cycles.

Project video

This is how I came up with the idea for this project:

Inspired by previous studies that investigated the use of capacitive deionization for the desalination of seawater, we adapted the process into a novel electrochemical enhancement of activated carbon fibres (ACF) for the treatment of toxic pharmaceutical effluents.


Ania Andersch

Programme manager ania.andersch@siwi.org +46 8 121 360 59