Manufacturing news briefs – stories you might have missed

Sparc granted graphene use patent

Sparc Technologies has been granted a patent for the use of graphene in the removal of contaniments such as mercury and arscenic. The patent covers graphene’s abilty to act as a porous matrix to remove heavy metal ions in liquids or gas. The company has already undertaken studies of graphene’s ability to absorb harmful PFAS chemicals, and will now test further uses.

Avecho Biotechnology progresses replacement for zinc in animal feed

Avecho Biotechnology has secured AB Vista as a partner in developing its TPM substitute for potentially harmful zinc in animal feeds. TPM, a tocopheryl phosphate mixture, is an enhanced form of Vitamin E. Food additive business, UK based AB Vista will test TPM with a combination of additives, after previously testing it in chickens and pigs. TPM is seen as a replacement for zinc oxide which protects piglets from diarrhoea. ZnO levels above 150 ppm will be banned from animal feeds in the EU from 2022.

Interstate connector strengthens electricity grid

The South Australian government has come a step closer to connecting its renewable-energy rich mid-north region directly to the eastern state power grid. TransGrid have agreed to deliver the NSW section of the project linking Robertstown in SA with Wagga Wagga in NSW. ElectraNet Pty Ltd is set to decide soon on the SA section. The two states will be able to dispatch excess energy to each other, with SA able to export surplus wind and solar PV power from the northern Spencer Gulf region of the state.

Vege Chips Chilli launched

Healthy snack company, Vege Chips has extended its range by adding a hot new flavour to its stable of gluten-free and vegan products. Now available in Woolworths supermarkets, Chilli Vege Chips are plant-based and feature hints of paprika, jalapeno, shallot leaf and garlic. The company’s products are free from nuts, soy, eggs, petrochemicals, GM ingredients, artificial colours and preservatives, and are also dairy- and gluten-free. The Vege Chips factory at Currumbin, Queensland is an exclusively gluten-free and dairy-free facility.

Gekko wins Austmine 2021 Craig Senger export award

Mining equipment manufacturer Gekko Systems was awarded Austmine’s Craig Senger Excellence in Export Award at this year’s Austmine industry leaders’ dinner and awards in Perth. The award recognises the Ballarat company’s excellence in export sales, selling into Russia, North America, South America and Africa during Covid-19. The award was sponsored by Austrade.

Micro-X opens US office

Portable X-ray machine manufacturer Micro-X has opened a new US headquarters at SeaTac, Washington State, which will be a focus for developing new airport security concepts. Micro-X developed carbon nanotube X-ray cold emitter technology and is working on faster and more reliable X-ray baggage screening, reimagining airport checkpoints. The company’s US CEO Brian Gonzales said: “Our new SeaTac facility will be a centre of excellence for imaging product development that will revolutionize medical, defense, and security x-ray imaging…our vision is for a self-service booth that provides a 3D image of carry-on luggage together with a body scanner and passport reader.”

Picture: Chilli Vege Chips

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