Magnificent new idea, copied from TakePart.com:
Taiwanese researchers have made a breakthrough in wastewater treatment, but will anyone actually drink it?
Good news, fans of terrible 90s bands—your unhealthy obsession with Hanson, Sugar Ray, or Creed could turn out to have a happy ending. No, their music will never be palatable, but the actual CDs on which their tunes were laser-printed, the very same audio discs currently collecting dust in your mom’s basement, could be used to make dirty water potable. At least this is the potential new use for old CDs recently proposed by a team of Taiwanese researchers.
“Optical disks are cheap and readily available,” said lead researcher Din Ping Tsai, a physicist at National Taiwan University, in a press release. “Close to 20 billion disks are already manufactured annually, so using old disks for water treatment might even be a way to cut down on waste.”
Each month, roughly 100,000 pounds of CDs become obsolete, with millions being sent to landfills around the world. When a CD decomposes, it releases Bisphenol-A, a toxic chemical that’s been linked to brain impairments, cancer and more.
Tsai’s process involves using a CD’s flat surface as a platform on which to grow zinc oxide. Later, when illuminated with UV light in a prototype water treatment device, the zinc oxide acts a photo-catalyst, breaking down organic pollutants in sewage water that’s filtered in by a hose.
In a test, the researchers found that “over 95 percent of the contaminants had broken down after just 60 minutes. That’s about 150 ml of waste water per minute.” For comparison, a typical bottle of water contains 500 milliliters.
To read more click the link at the top.