Permionics is pioneered by Mr. S.P. Mayor , a hydraulic engineer from Imperial College, London and a bachelor's degree from Oxford University. Subsequent to that, five years experience in building Hydroelectric power stations for The English Electric Company, led Mr. Mayor towards developing a passionate interest in water - its availability and conservation - and thereby a concern about the rapid desecration and depletion of water resources.
In 1976, Mr. Mayor came across recent developments in the area of membrane technology, which fascinated him. This was in the form of research done by Dr. S. Sourirajan, a professor in the University of Ottawa, who was the first to demonstrate the applicability of the Reverse Osmosis process for water desalination using a Cellulose Acetate semi permeable membrane. Taking this revolutionary development as a precursor, Mr. Mayor, successfully developed the Cellulose Acetate Reverse Osmosis membrane indigenously with in house R & D.
By 1980, we had developed our own machinery for membrane casting of Cellulose Acetate Membranes. Spiral wound membrane module manufacturing facilities were also set up. Modules upto 4" diameter and 25 inches length were perfected and commercially manufactured incorporating our own Cellulose Acetate membranes.
In 1980, Permionics supplied India's first indigenous membrane system for the concentration of dilute streptomycin solution at M/s. Sarabhai Chemicals, Baroda.
As an extension of the Reverse Osmosis membrane, the Cellulose Acetate Ultrafiltration membrane was developed to cater for macromolecular separation and once again another first was the supply and commissioning of an Ultrafiltration system for the concentration and purification of Papain Enzyme.
Developments continued at Permionics to find other applications, to make newer membranes and to introduce this still new technology to the market. In 1983, the Gujarat Government approached us - they had been on the look out for an appropriate technology for solving the acute drinking water shortage in drought stricken areas of coastal Gujarat. We successfully demonstrated the ability of the process of Reverse Osmosis for desalination of brackish water to the Gujarat Government. This lead to our being given the project to install several Reverse Osmosis systems in selected villages of the drought affected parts of the State. Our approach was turnkey. From site development, to design, supply and commissioning, the entire treatment system including pre and post treatment was executed by us incorporating our own indigenously produced membrane systems. The capacities varied from 20 to 100 cu mtrs per day of treated water.
This & other such pioneering developments firmly established Permionics as the premier company recognized for membrane technology in India and it was a precursor to the growth of use of membranes for a variety of applications in the field of water, wastewater and process stream treatment in India and overseas.
Further Advances In Membrane Technology At Permionics:
Membrane separation technology was rapidly gaining popularity in various fields of application apart from water desalination. This necessitated the development of more versatile and rugged membrane materials, to withstand higher temperatures, pH's, and harsh chemicals. Anticipating this requirement, Permionics, yet again, successfully took up the challenge to develop its own polymeric synthetic membranes. The new addition to the Permionics range of indigenously produced membranes was the Polysulfone Ultrafiltration membrane, a new Synthetic Polymeric membrane, more durable and superior to the Cellulose Acetate membranes.
Similarly for Reverse Osmosis, the synthetic Polyamide Thin Film Composite membranes were available and could be sourced in the international market. With the Polysulfone UF membrane and the Polyamide TFC RO membrane, we were equipped for applying membrane technology to the harsher and more demanding process chemical and effluent streams.
Not only were we pioneering in membrane manufacture, we felt a requirement to develop the scope and range of membrane technology application. Further developments were focused on developing applications for our range of membranes and we successfully pioneered membrane usage in several non-water applications such as milk concentration, whey fractionation, dyes desalting and deashing, broth clarification etc.
Our development efforts did not simply concentrate on the mainstream industrial market. We successfully developed a unique Polysulfone membrane, which could work at pressures < 5 psig giving reasonably good fluxes. This development led to the conceptualization of a domestic water purifier incorporating a small Polysulfone Ultrafiltration module, which would remove harmful bacteria, virus and even fine colloidal matter from drinking water. Therefore, without the aid of electricity or chemicals and at overhead water tank pressure, you could obtain crystal clear, pure and safe drinking water. This product, PUREFLO, is being marketed in the domestic market through our own sales and service network.
With over Eleven types of membranes in our production range, we have been able to custom design and tailor make membranes and systems to suit any potential and viable application. The company has an impeccable record of quality and service. This is because each and every query is treated with the uniqueness and the gravity and seriousness it deserves.
We have over 1000 installations of systems in the country and abroad catering to almost every application ranging from Broth Clarification to Water Desalination
The `PERMA' Nanofiltration membrane has revolutionized the dyeing industry by proving to be the best solution for the desalting and concentration of Reactive dyes. We have supplied over 70 systems for this application including exports to THAILAND, PAKISTAN, INDONESIA and ARGENTINA.
MITSUBISHI HEAVY INDUSTRIES have selected us a their sub vendors for their 4000 cumtrs/day (180 cumtrs/hr) REVERSE OSMOSIS SYSTEM to be supplied to their client M/S MITSUBISHI CHEMICAL CORPORATION who has come-up with a PTA project at Haldia, West Bengal. The system operates on a feed of 1500 ppm TDS and is completely automated using PLCs. We have done the complete designing, engineering and manufacturing of the system.