Ceramic membrane coating uses DNA to make pores

A ceramic membrane technology, which uses DNA to create the holes in the membrane, is to be one of the technologies presented at the Launchpad For Innovation on Day 1 of the Singapore International Water Week (1-5 June 2014).

Cerahelix Inc of Orono, Maine, USA, is promoting its patented helix-NFM™ process, which provides a nano-ceramic coating for conventional ceramic filters. The company will be exhibiting on 2-3 June at the show.

The ceramic coating is created with DNA strands aligned through it, which are then removed to create nano-scale pores. The technology can purify solutions at low pressure and in adverse conditions, making it a robust technology for the process filtration industry.

The coating will create pores of <1nm, taking ceramic membranes to the extreme of nanofiltration and into reverse osmosis territory. Cerahelix says its hydrophilic coating has high flux, broad chemical resistance and high operating temperatures, and is fouling resistant. Cerahelix was awarded a US$1 million Phase II SBIR grant from the US Department of Energy. The award was based on product and market validation during DOE-funded Phase I research in 2012.