Aug 282011

AQUA-NU: IT MAY HAVE taken six years, but Louth-based entrepreneur Pat Farrelly of Aqua-Nu has come up with a pioneering water filtration technology that has some of the biggest names in the water- filtration industry knocking on his door.

Farrelly is keeping mum about the detail of his invention (which is protected by 42 patents) but in broad terms he has developed a method of filtering water through ceramic that works 700 times faster than its closest rival and has the power to knock out a long list of water-borne illnesses such as legionella and E.coli and tropical diseases such as sleeping sickness and river blindness. The system also removes contaminants such as heavy metals and pesticides.

Farrelly’s system (which can be retro-fitted) uses ultra-high unassisted flow rate ceramics and an original anti-microbial treatment system to clean the water. Farrelly says the technology has far-reaching commercial and humanitarian applications.

“We had six years of trial and error, no wages and a cost of around €1.7 million to get us this far,” says Farrelly, who is completely self-taught when it comes to the highly specialised world of ceramics technology. What makes Farrelly’s system of particular interest is that it works without pressure (ceramics usually need heavy pressure to work) and that the filter disc can be made in any shape or size. This means it will work with anything from a water bottle to a group water scheme and can be used in a wide range of industrial, commercial and domestic applications.

The product will initially be made for industrial use, but also on the way is the PurityCap, aimed at domestic consumers who regularly buy bottled water. The PurityCap fits into the top of most water bottles and means that bottles can be filled from the tap instead of replaced, and the water is filtered by the system before drinking.

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