Effective rainwater treatment intercepts microplastics from artificial turf
Precipitation and surface water flush out microplastics from artificial turf pitches. This is a challenge that Hauraton is overcoming with responsible environmental technology. The drainage specialist based in the Baden region has a safe and effective solution for filtering and retaining microplastic particles. In the Sportfix®Clean drainage system and channel filter with filter substrate Carbotec 60, particles as small as 0.45 µm (0.00045 mm) are reliably removed by filtering.
With sports fields being equipped increasingly with artificial turf worldwide, this is highly relevant. Synthetic surfaces are very robust, require much less maintenance than natural turf and provide a high standard of safety for athletes. On modern surfaces, such playing properties as ball roll behaviour are very close to those of natural turf sports pitches. The benefits of artificial turf also include a long useful life of around 1,700 hours per year compared to 400 to 800 hours for natural turf, a service life of at least ten years and greatly reduced maintenance effort.
Artificial turf surfaces are a type of plastic carpet. During play on such surfaces, the EPDM granulate (the material used for infilled artificial turf) and the synthetic grass fibres are exposed to repeated stressing. The mechanical wear from high tread loads – as arising during football or rugby – causes tiny particles or blades of artificial grass to break off. This amounts to 250 to 300 kg per year for modern sports pitches. These particles need to be prevented from entering the natural water cycle, and ultimately the food chain, via rainwater draining off the pitch. Research over the last few years has shown that microplastics, now present in large quantities in the world’s oceans, have also already entered our food chain. The health consequences are not yet known.
To prevent plastic particles from reaching water bodies, collected surface water must be filtered before it is distributed.
Surface filtration intercepts the smallest particles
Sportfix®Clean channels offer a simple but extraordinarily simple solution. The channels safely collect not only surface water flowing off the sports field contaminated with microplastics, but also larger microplastic parts transported to and collected along the edge of the pitch during play. The water is collected and drained off in the channel run, while being fed through the channel filter and filtered at the same time. The filter substrate used, Carbotec 60, is able to permanently retain the finest particles with sizes down to 0.45 µm.
Longer maintenance intervals for extra reliability for the operator
This channel filter functions on the principle of surface filtration. It is therefore twice as effective: not only plastic parts are retained on the filter surface, but also pollutants such as heavy metals and hydrocarbons. The system has been shown to work reliably over very long periods. Long maintenance intervals and simple cleaning are additional benefits. After many years of use, filter cake forms on the surface of the filter. This is stripped off during maintenance and then only the filter substrate that has been removed is replenished.
Drainage systems are also usually required for artificial turf surfaces, whether they are used on hockey fields or football pitches. In addition to safe drainage, Sportfix Clean channels also provide a simple way to filter the waste water and permanently retain plastic particles and pollutants. This economical filter system can also be installed at existing facilities.