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Method of manipulating the chemical properties of water to improve the effectiveness of a desired chemical process

United States Patent

December 14, 1999
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
U.S. Department of Energy - Visit the Office of the Assistant General Counsel for Technology Transfer & Intellectual Property Website
The method of the present invention is adapted to manipulate the chemical properties of water in order to improve the effectiveness of a desired chemical process. The method involves heating the water in the vessel to subcritical temperatures between to C. while maintaining sufficient pressure to the water to maintain the water in the liquid state. Various physiochemical properties of the water can be manipulated including polarity, solute solubility, surface tension, viscosity, and the disassociation constant. The method of the present invention has various uses including extracting organics from solids and semisolids such as soil, selectively extracting desired organics from nonaqueous liquids, selectively separating organics using sorbent phases, enhancing reactions by controlling the disassociation constant of water, cleaning waste water, and removing organics from water using activated carbon or other suitable sorbents.
Hawthorne; Steven B. (Grand Forks, ND), Miller; David J. (Grand Forks, ND), Yang; Yu (Greenville, NC), Lagadec; Arnaud Jean-Marie (Grand Forks, ND)
Energy & Environmental Research Center (Grand Forks, ND)
08/ 936,183
September 24, 1997
The invention was developed with government support under U.S. Department of Energy Contract No. DE-FC21-93MC30097.