New play on organoclay

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Courtesy of EcoLog Environmental Resources Group

AquaBlok, Ltd., a manufacturer of innovative clay-based composite materials, has announced the introduction of a new organoclay product that provides for ease of delivery and improved performance of this well known remedial material technology.

What the company calls 'AquaBlok+ORGANOCLAY' will preferentially adsorb and sequester a wide range of hydrocarbon and petroleum based contaminants. It can be utilized in remedial activities at MGP sites, wood treating facilities and a wide range of refinery and/or spill containment applications in the water, sediments or soils.

AquaBlok+ORGANOCLAY offers benefits compared to conventional powdered or pelletized organoclay products. First, there's improved delivery through a standing water column to sediments. Second, there's more efficient use of organoclay through use of a thin coating on a substrate/core. Next there's better product effectiveness through higher organoclay surface area, plus a lower cost per pound for a target volume, and ease of handling and placement.

HOW IT WORKS

The material works due to the unique properties of organically modified clays.

In general terms, it functions on the principle of adsorption through Ionic Bonding. There is no actual exchange, where one particle is substituted for another. Each particle of clay and contaminant infinitely wrestles for possession of the other. This bond is strong enough that the contaminant particle is removed from the water and will not be released without the addition of a significant outside source of energy.

Organoclays have been used for many years in water purification and a wide range of other petroleum contamination related applications. Generally, AquaBlok+ ORGANOCLAY is expected to adsorb between 50 and 100 per cent of the total weight of the organoclay present in the particle. This percentage of organoclay can vary from 20 to 40 per cent depending on the desired treatment design, contaminant material and concentration.

Two important advantages are provided by AquaBlok's organoclay product. First, the dense aggregate core of the coated particle (greater mass) effectively delivers organoclay though the water to the sediments, where all of the adsorbent material can be effectively utilized. Second, the larger diameter surface of the organoclay coated particle presents a higher effective surface area to potential contaminants. This provides for a more efficient use of the high-value organoclay component at a cost that is lower than pure organoclay.

Other important features of AquaBlok+ORGANOCLAY include:

• It remains permeable, allowing all the effective adsorbent material to be utilized;

• It's hydrophobic, so it's note impacted from lack of water for a period of time;

• It can be mixed with soil or other permeable media for use in cut-off of lateral seeps;

• When configured as a 'gate' with a funnel-and-gate system, it can selectively capture discharges from submerged seeps of upland plume related discharges;

• Placement below a low-permeability AquaBlok cap will minimize thickness of the treatment layer due to efficient use of material in lateral seep below cap.

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