Chemicals such as pharmaceuticals and dyes from hospital waste water can be removed by date palm leaves, say scientists.
According to a press release on Sunday, the analytical and environmental research group in the Department of Chemistry at the College of Science at SQU has started a project with a long-term objective of establishing a physicochemical unit for the treatment of hospital waste water before being released into the sewerage system.
Dr. Al Said Al Shafey, the principal investigator of the research project, said they could extract novel dehydrated and activated carbons from date palm leaflets, which is a cheap and sustainable resource in Oman, Gulf News reported.
The scientists tested different carbons for removal of certain pharmaceuticals including ciprofloxacin, paracetamol, fexofenadine, lisinoprril, diphenhydramine and chloropheneramine maleate from aquatic solutions. The chemists at the SQU also examined the removal of heavy metals and some dyes.
The results showed that the cheap dehydrated carbon from date palm leaflets proves to be as efficient as activated carbon for removing pharmaceuticals and dyes.
But dehydrated carbons showed extraordinary findings for the removal of heavy metals as cation exchanger and these can be reused many times.
Dr. Al Shafey said that the findings of the research would be soon utilised in hospital waste water treatment in a pilot scale with an objective of establishing a physicochemical unit of hospital waste water treatment prior to its mixing with municipal wastewater.