Activated carbon to meet Europe’s BPR regulation

Activated carbon manufacturers should offer silver impregnated activated carbon that is compliant with the new Biocidal Products Regulations to ensure that downstream users can make the necessary anti-microbial and anti-bacterial claims for their products. One company explains further.

Using silver for antimicrobial protection is not a new concept, as far back as the 6th century, silver vessels were used to store water to keep it pure. Silver is a broad-spectrum antimicrobial that, even in very low quantities, eliminates bacteria. Even in very small amounts, it interferes with bacteria’s metabolism and the proteins that make up bacteria. It also stops bacteria from replicating and inhibits microbial growth at levels near 20 ppb (parts per billion), far lower than copper, zinc or other antimicrobial chemicals.

Today, silver-impregnated activated carbon is commonly used in the production of bacteriostatic water filter products for home use, as well as cartridges for the purification of potable water, beverage water and municipal water treatment. When properly added to activated carbon, silver prevents any possible build-up of micro-organisms in water filters without affecting the purification properties of the carbon.

Because of its antimicrobial/antiseptic properties, silver-impregnated activated carbon is an effective adsorbent for purification in domestic and other water systems. It is used effectively in point-of-use (POU) and whole-building, point of entry water filtration systems (POE).

In Europe, the Biocidal Products Regulation (EU) 528/2012 (BPR) concerns the placing on the market and use of biocidal products. Biocidal products are used to protect humans, animals, materials or articles against harmful organisms, like pests or bacteria, by the action of the active substances contained in the biocidal product.

The BPR regulation, adopted in 2012, is designed to improve the biocidal products market in the EU and ensure a high level of protection for humans and the environment. In spite of the long transitional period, most companies manufacturing activated carbons still do not have media that meets BPR specifications.

Carbon Activated Europe, the European Operation of Carbon Activated Corporation, can provide silver-impregnated activated carbons for water purification that meets the very stringent Biocidal Products Regulation. This is possible due to a breakthrough in the manufacture of silver impregnated activated carbon by the R&D team at Carbon Activated Europe. Using pioneering techniques Carbon Activated Europe has developed a new range of silver impregnated activated carbon called “SL-BPR” which complements their existing market leading SL range of silver impregnated carbons.

During the development process, which was carried out in conjunction with key industry partners in the POU and POE field, it was clear that the new SL-BPR range should maintain or exceed the performance characteristics of silver impregnated activated carbons already in the market. On this basis, it was determined that the SL-BPR product should meet or exceed the performance of Carbon Activated Europe’s existing SL range and other products in the market.

After scaling up to commercial production levels it was confirmed that the SL-BPR range provides the same adsorption performance for organic compounds that cause taste, odour, discolouration and aesthetic considerations. The range also has the same dichlorination performance and the same silver leaching characteristics. There is a consistent application of silver throughout each activated carbon granule and therefore throughout the bulk supplied material.

Carbon Activated Corporation is a global manufacturer, distributor of activated carbon and related services. They offer a complete range of activated carbons’ including coconut shell, coal, wood and impregnated types. These are available in both industry standard and made-to-order sizes.

Air treatment impregnated activated carbons are also available for use in gas purification and air pollution control systems. These products are specifically impregnated during post-activation processing. Impregnated activated carbon allows for an expanded range of applications such as removal of acid gases, ammonia and amines, aldehydes, radio-active iodine, mercury and inorganic gases including arsine and phosphine. A few common applications are removal of mercury from flue gas, odour control and upgrading of biogas.

Acid-washed and catalytic activated carbons are also available for applications where purification levels achievable by standard activated carbons are insufficient. Acid-washed activated carbons are used in ultra-pure environments due to their exceptional purity and catalytic activated carbons provide improved performance for the removal of chloramines and hydrogen sulphide from water, as well as to standard the adsorptive characteristics of regular activated carbon. Catalytic activated carbon is produced by altering the surface structure of activated carbon to promote reactions without chemical impregnation.

Silver-impregnated activated carbon is commonly used in the production of bacteriostatic water filter products for home use.
Silver-impregnated activated carbon is commonly used in the production of bacteriostatic water filter products for home use.