(The Gist of Science Reporter) Mercury-free Lamp Purifies Water  [MARCH-2018]

(The Gist of Science Reporter) Mercury-free Lamp Purifies Water


Mercury-free Lamp Purifies Water

THE use of ultraviolet lamps in water purifiers is common but the presence of mercury in these lamps could be potentially hazardous. Now a group of Indian scientists have developed a mercury-free ultraviolet lamp that can be used in water purifiers. Scientists have engineered an optimized dielectric discharge based mercury-free vacuum UV/UV light source for water sterilisation. The lamp can produce the desired level of wavelengths for deactivation of bacteria within ten seconds without the use of mercury. The lamp has been developed by scientists from two CSIR labs- Central Electronics Engineering Research Institute (CEERI), Pilani and the National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEERI), Nagpur -working along with the Birla Institute of Scientific Research (BISR), Jaipur.

Naturally available water may contain pathogenic organisms and toxic compounds. UV radiation is preferable for water purification over chemical treatment. UV radiation is widely used for water sterilization as it does not create any byproduct during treatment and does not alter the taste of water. It also does not eliminate minerals. But it has several disadvantages which include start-up time, filament failure, sleeve breakage, dimensional restrictions and non-reparability. Mercury-containing UV-lamps generate a considerable amount of toxic mercury waste at the end of their life as a typical UV lamp contains 20 to 200 mg of mercury.

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Courtesy: Science Reporter