Research & Development


Oil-water separation with bio-inspired textiles

BOA textile oil absorption © L. Beek & I. da Matta, 2021, RWTH Aachen University
Superhydrophobic biological surfaces are able to adsorb oil from water and separate it at the same time. In the BOA - Bionic Oil Adsorber project, this phenomenon was analysed in detail, abstracted and now successfully transferred to textile technology. Technical textiles are now available with which oils of different viscosities and compositions can be separated from water according to the biological role model.

The advantage of this method is that the oil is transported through the textile and can be collected with a floating container. Following this, it is possible to dispose of the oil properly. According to current findings, the textiles are reusable and suitable for permanent use.

The consortium consisting of the Nees Institute for Plant Biodiversity at the University of Bonn, the company Heimbach GmbH and the ITA Institut für Textiltechnik of RWTH Aachen University would like to thank the Deutsche Bundesstiftung Umwelt DBU for funding the project 34602/01-03 and all companies for the friendly support. If you are interested in the oil-adsorbing textiles, please contact Leonie Beek.

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