Iron Nanoparticles for Water Treatment: Is the Future Free or Fixed?

Sarah Tesh, Tom Scott

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter in a book

3 Citations (Scopus)
136 Downloads (Pure)


As global populations continue to increase, the pressure on water supplies will inevitably intensify. Consequently the international need for more efficient and cost effective water remediation technologies will also rise. The introduction of nano-technology into the industry may represent a significant advancement and zero-valent iron nano-particles (INPs) have been thoroughly studied for potential remediation applications.These nano-scale particles with metallic cores and oxide surfaces show broad applicability for treatment of both toxic organic compounds and heavy metals. However, the application of water dispersed INP suspensions is limited and somewhat contentious on the grounds of safety, whilst INP reaction mechanisms,oxide-fluid interactions, transport properties and ecotoxicity are areas still under investigation. Theoretically,the development of nano-composites containing INPs, or the less reactive iron oxide nano-particles (IONPs), to overcome these issues provides the logical next step for developing nano-materials that are better suited to wide application across the water industry. This chapter provides a thorough insight into the pros and cons of both mobile, dispersed INPs and static, bulk nano-composites; discussing the evolution of nano-technology for water treatment and the diverse range of products being developed whilst highlighting the limitations of individual solutions, overall classes of technology, and lack of comparative testing. The chapter discusses what further developments are needed to optimise remediation systems to subsequently achieve commercial maturity.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationIron Oxides
Subtitle of host publicationFrom Nature to Applications
EditorsDamien Faivre
Number of pages30
ISBN (Electronic)9783527691395
ISBN (Print)9783527338825
Publication statusPublished - 5 Jul 2016

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