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CLEANR Teams With GKD To Develop Microplastic Filtration System For Washing Machines

U.S. venture and world-leading German mesh-manufacturer collaborate on a solution that captures more than 90% of microplastic fibers as small as 50-microns

Mesh filtration specialists GKD Group has partnered with CLEANR, a developer of advanced microplastics filtering technologies, to help washing machine manufacturers meet emerging regulations aimed at eliminating plastic microfiber pollution in global waterways, ecosystems and food chains.

The companies will collaborate in the development, engineering and manufacturing of CLEANR’s, solutions, which efficiently filter microplastics (particles smaller than five millimeters, or one-fifth of an inch, in length) from residential, commercial and industrial washing machine wastewater.

CLEANR’s unique patent-pending technology can be applied as an external filter or readily integrated into modern washing machine designs as a pre-installed solution. The technology has been shown to capture over 90% of microplastic fibers larger than 50 microns in size – outperforming any major solution in the market. CLEANR also offers a consumer-friendly dry disposal mechanism that prevents hands-on contact with microfiber waste and prevents waste from being washed down the drain.

CLEANR has accelerated the development of its solutions for washing machine manufacturers through its early access to the Formlabs Automation Ecosystem. The new platform enables new levels of 3D printing productivity through a highly scalable and automated workflow that can produce back-to-back 3D prints 24/7 with minimal human intervention. The 3D printing platform will enable CLEANR to accelerate the introduction of its new microplastic-filtering solutions, and collaborate quickly and efficiently with appliance manufacturers to integrate the technology into their washing machine designs.

Over a half-million tons of plastic microfibers spill into the oceans every year in the form of washing machine wastewater. This accounts for 35% of all microplastics in the environment, making clothing and textiles the world’s number-one source of microplastic pollution. Over the past decade, an alarming body of evidence has emerged regarding the impacts of microplastic pollution on waterways, ecosystems, food chains and human health.

Research has shown that:
• Microplastics now cover 88% of the ocean’s surface and have been identified in areas as remote as the beaches of the Arctic and Antarctic, the summit of Mount Everest and the bottom of the Mariana Trench.
• On average, humans ingest a credit-card size amount of plastic every week, according to a study published by WWF International, causing microplastics to enter our circulation systems, tissue, and even placenta. One recent study discovered the presence of microplastics in the blood of nearly 80% of human test subjects.
• The effects of microplastic pollution on the health of wildlife, aquatic organisms and humans is not well understood. But studies have found evidence that high levels of exposure to microplastics and certain types of polymers may lead to lower feeding efficiency and growth rates, tumor promotion, endocrine disruption,
liver toxicity, physical deterioration, autism spectrum disorder and even higher rates of mortality.

Without intervention, current levels of global microplastic pollution are set to rise dramatically over the coming decades. Recent research from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) indicates that the accumulation of plastic waste emitted from clothing and other textiles is on course to double by 2050.


See also: Speed Queen Upgrades Front Load Washer And Dryer With Flea Cycle And Other Features