[Canada] A Peterborough start-up with a foothold in the water industry has its sights set on revolutionizing the way mining and oil companies clean the water they pollute as they operate.
After years of research and testing in a University lab, the team at Noble Purifications Inc. is piloting the equipment and technology that can make that vision a reality. From a Douro-Dummer facility along the Otonabee River, staff are working to mass produce an algae called Euglena. The algae is used in a filtration system that removes environmental contaminates in wastewater.
It’s a concept Noble Purification’s founder, Adam Noble, first discovered through various experiments — and that discovery has earned him a number of national and international accolades in recent years.
But with the help of four others who’ve joined the Noble Purification team, the concept has grown into a company that promises to make considerable headway in wastewater treatment technology.
Andressa Lacerda, chief operational officer for the company, says Noble Purification’s progress isn’t just the byproduct of good research and hardworking staff.
She says the community has pitched in to ensure the company has what it needs to get started, which included support from the Greater Peterborough and District Innovation Cluster, Trent University and even from their new landlord, who is keep the rent for the facility at a price that’s affordable for Noble Purification.
And when Ms Lacerda relays the company’s story and vision to professionals across the country and beyond, she says she gets a similar response, which has led to a government grant for three years of continuing research at Trent University and Fleming College as well as a hefty discount on expensive pieces of equipment.
“There are parts and equipment in here from as far as Europe,” Ms Lacerda says in the pilot facility. “It’s worth millions but we were able to get it for 10 times less than that.”
While she and Mr. Noble say there were times doors closed in their faces, the company kept moving.
“There were several leaps of faith,” Ms Lacerda says. “You can’t be afraid to act like a crazy person.”
She says she was a little nervous seeing the species of the algae-growing equipment and the filtration system come into the facility — especially since the company ordered the equipment without having a chance to see or test it in advance.
For Mr. Noble, the same moment was a bit surreal.
He can remember growing algae in his parents’ sauna. Noble Purification now has the capability to grow algae on a scale that’s 12,000 times larger, creating up to 80,000 concentrated tonnes of algae per year.
That capacity will only grow as the company makes plans to expand at its current facility.
In the meantime, Mr. Noble and is working with a successful Canadian businessman (whom he can’t name) to help secure a place for Noble Purification on a national scale.
“We’re gaining a lot of traction in oil and fracking,” he says, adding the filtration system will allow companies to extract more oil out of the ground but to also ensure the water they’re leaving behind is clean.
Mr. Noble says the company isn’t about his science experiments anymore.
“This isn’t the Adam Noble Show,” he says. “This is a legitimate company run by a team of people.”
He adds the company is looking for people to fill a variety of staff positions and he encourages those interested in the field to get in touch.
Noble Purification invited community members to their County Road 32 facility Tuesday evening (Sept. 1) to give community members a better idea of what their support has helped create.
View original article at: Noble Purification piloting clean-water technology using Euglena