Three Dimensional Cathode for the Electrolytic Removal of Heavy Metals from Aqueous Waste Streams

Award Information
Department of Energy
Award Year:
Phase I
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Eltron Research, Inc.
5660 Airport Boulevard, Boulder, CO, 80301
Hubzone Owned:
Minority Owned:
Woman Owned:
Principal Investigator:
Ms. Ella F. Spiegel
Senior Electrochemist
(303) 440-8008
Business Contact:
Ms. Eileen E. Sammells
VP, Administration
(303) 440-8008
Research Institution:
9 45847-97-I Three Dimensional Cathode for the Electrolytic Removal of Heavy Metals from Aqueous Waste Streams--Eltron Research, Inc., 5660 Airport Boulevard, Boulder, CO 80301-2340; (303) 440-8008 Ms. Ella F. Spiegel, Principal Investigator Ms. Eileen E. Sammells, Business Official DOE Grant No. DE-FG03-97ER82363 Amount: $74,978 Water contaminated by heavy metals arises from decontamination and decommissioning of nuclear waste sites and acid mine drainage. Metals such as chromium, lead, copper, and mercury pose a significant threat to health and safety as well as to the aquatic environments. Since these heavy metals cannot be degraded or readily detoxified, they pose a serious environmental hazard. One approach to solving this problem is to use an innovative design for an electrochemical cell to facilitate the removal of low concentrations of copper and lead commonly found in aqueous waste streams at Department of Energy facilities. Phase I will focus on collecting heavy metals on the surface of a spouted-bed cathode; upon completion of the electrolysis, metals can be recovered for future use. Various cathode materials and particulate sizes will be systemically studied for the purpose of optimizing their electrochemical performance in order to remove heavy metals in aqueous waste streams and groundwater. When the long-term studies of electrochemical cell components have been completed, they will be examined for durability. The information obtained during the Phase I study will determine whether and how to scale up to the pilot plant stage for Phase II. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits as described by the awardee: Industries that could benefit from successful development of this technology include those involved in the electrowinning of metals, wastewater treatment, cleanup of strip mining runoff, and the manufacture of paints and dye products.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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