Use of Soy Proteins or Soy Derivatives and Zero-Valent Iron for Environmental Remediation


Lehigh has developed a novel material for the treatment of contaminated water and soil. The method for the preparation of such materials involves the dispersion of zero-valance nanoscale iron particles and use of either soy protein, soy milk, or other soy derivatives. These particles have large surface areas, giving them increased reactivity with toxins. They are also very small, allowing them to follow toxic water through the ground and remove toxicity.


The dispersions can be injected into soil and groundwater for site remediation. Additionally, soy proteins is a naturally occurring substance devoid of any known adverse environmental impact which can also stabilize and enhance the mobility of the zero-valent iron particles in the subsurface environment.


Lehigh Tech ID#082106-01




The global market for water treatment methods is over $48 billion, with a demand for such methods increasing over 6% annually. The fastest growing segment is in China, growing at over 15% annually. [1,2] For environmental remediation applications, companies are starting to see more business as construction projects pick up, the method of hydraulic fracking expands and extraction of natural gases increases. In additional, awareness about environmental concerns is on the rise and is now at more of the fore-front in policy making and business decisions. [3]



Lehigh University is currently looking to identify corporate partners.

App Type Country Serial No. Patent No. File Date Issued Date Expire Date
Utility United States 11/843,970 7,507,345 8/23/2007 3/24/2009 8/23/2027
Energy and Environment
For Information, Contact:
Rick Smith
Lehigh University
Wei-Xian Zhang
Environmental Remediation
Pollution Control
Water Treatment