Why do we call our technology picofiltration?

When we told people that we made a ceramic nanofiltration membrane they heard one of two things. “Ceramic” meant that we made an ultrafiltration membrane, and “nanofiltration” meant that our filter was a polymer. Our product is neither. In fact, the Cerahelix ceramic PicoHelix filter separates dissolved solids at the molecular level. This is demonstrated by the molecular weight cutoff curve that is generated when we filter a series of small molecules and report the size cutoff in units of molecular mass (Daltons). The term “Picofiltration” means a ceramic filter that can reject molecules smaller than 500 Daltons. We extend the ceramic filtration range beyond nanofiltration.


How do we make the PicoHelix?

Cerahelix manufactures the PicoHelix membrane using a patented DNA template technology. To us DNA has a size and shape, which we use as a tool to form sub nanometer pores in a ceramic.  The pores are 100,000 times smaller than a human hair and perform molecular separations to a higher purity than any other ceramic filter.



Why use DNA to make a filter?

DNA makes pores in the ceramic membrane that are

  • linear
  • nearly identical in size
  • incredibly small (0.6nm to 0.8nm)
These features yield a ceramic membrane that combines high selectivity with fast transport. The ability to control different aspects of the DNA template offers advanced development opportunities for the future.