UKM In Joint Research On Treatment Of Wastewater and Chemical Effluents
By Asmahanim Amir
Pix Ikhwan Hashim
BANGI, 14 Dec 2015 – The National University of Malaysia (UKM) is to collaborate with Malaysian and Japanese partners on the of development of adsorbent composite and processes using Limonite, an iron-ore extract used in dyes, and Kenaf powder, obtained from fibres of the Kenaf plant, for waste water treatment.
Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academic and International Affairs), Prof Dato’ Ir Dr Riza Atiq Abdullah OK Rahmat said the key cooperation includes research into the efficiency of the Kenaf-Limonite composite product for the treatment of dye and mill effluents and removal of odour.
Representing UKM, Prof Riza Atiq signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Japan Limonite Pte Ltd and Angle Genesys Agro Sdn Bhd for collaboration in the research of Kenaf, which is substance obtained from the Kenaf plant used in environmental-friendly products.
“Besides that, this MoU also apply joint research grants at national and international levels, joint participation in internationally-funded projects and collaboration in research and the promotion of research outputs,” he said at the signing ceremony.
He said UKM had previously developed various types of natural adsorbents based on agricultural by-products, such as Kenaf core wood and oil palm empty fruit bunch fibres.
“Kenaf core has been proven to be highly efficient in the removal of organic dyes and de-colourisation of mill effluents.
“Besides, some preliminary works on limonite powder supplied by Japan Limonite has also been carried out and interestingly the results show that limonite powder can be used as an excellent catalyst in decomposing organic compounds in water.
“Coupled with the concern on the water pollution due to the industrialization, it becomes more important to find better and cheaper adsorbent and treatment processes,” he said.
Prof Riza said the project will involve Lembaga Kenaf dan Tembakau Negara (LKTN) and Nihon Suido Consultation Co Ltd, Japan, when it reaches to large scale industrial applications.
“One of the attracting points of this collaboration is both of the raw materials used are of natural based and the ultimate target is to use the product for the treatment of industrial effluent which is one of the main pollutants for the environment,” he said.
Meanwhile, the General Manager of Limonite Pte Ltd Japan, Norio Shimada said he confident that Limonite will yield positive results.
“I’m happy with this cooperation and very appreciate with your (UKM) invitation together with us. We sure that the project will use the comprehensive system for analyst waste water treatment here in Malaysia,” he added.