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New sheets developed by IIT-Delhi to curb seepage,help in water conservation

At present,50 per cent of the total water Delhi receives from canals and other sources is wasted because of seepage on its way to the city.

Written by Hamari Jamatia | New Delhi |
March 15, 2009 1:39:46 am

At present,50 per cent of the total water Delhi receives from canals and other sources is wasted because of seepage on its way to the city. The material used to line canals to prevent seepage gets spoiled easily,getting damaged during construction at times.

IIT-Delhi has now come up with a solution and has developed novel puncture-resistant sheets that can be used effectively to conserve water in the city. The material used to manufacture the sheets is fabric-based. The sheets have been developed in association with the Ministry of Water Resources to prevent water seepage when used as a lining in canals and ponds.

The sheets,which are around 0.5 mm thick and have excellent puncture resistance,have been successfully utilised at the Central Agricultural Research Institute (CARI) in Port Blair,in ponds in Maharashtra and in Bhubaneswar in Orissa,and in a pond in IIT-Delhi.

The developer,Professor B L Deopura of Textile Technology,IIT-Delhi,said the sheets can also be used in the construction of houses. A lining placed on the roof and in the basement while building houses can avoid water seepage from tanks or during rains.

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“In fact,these sheets can even be used for rainwater harvesting as ponds used to collect water can be lined with the material,” he said.

Deopura said work on the project started more than five years ago as a departmental project but later the Ministry of Water Resources took interest and started helping out financially.

Talks are on with states like Haryana and Rajasthan,which are exploring the possibility of using the material for water conservation. Deopura said: “In some places,LDPE films of around 200 microns are used for lining canals and ponds but these films get damaged at the construction stage and,hence,serve very limited purpose in controlling water seepage.”

He said the construction cost of canals that incorporate these sheets turns out to be much less when compared to those using conventional construction methods. “The sheets have a wide variety of applications,including soil conservation in areas where soil around river banks and oceans can be easily washed off. Making tubes using these novel material and filling them with soil provides an inexpensive method for embankments,” Deopura said.

The product is already in manufacturing mode.

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