FILTECH 2016: Pitiless With Pollutants

Blücher’s spherical, high-performance adsorbents are superior in performance to activated carbons.

By Adrian Wilson, European Correspondent

Some 350 companies are taking part in this year’s Filtech 2016, which takes place in Cologne, Germany, from October 11-13, and always prominent at this exhibition is Blücher GmbH, based in Erkrath, Germany.

The core of this family-owned firm’s business is based on spherical, high-performance adsorbents, which are similar to activated carbon in how they react, but far superior in performance. They are branded – Saratoga and Saratech – and pollutants, odors and other unwanted substances can be reliably filtered out of gases and fluids and then safely bonded inside them.

Blücher filter technologies can be used wherever undesirable or even hazardous pollution has to be eliminated. A recent application area has been the extraction of metals from ex-industrial sites by means of a hydrometallurgical process.


Research, development and innovation have also made Blücher a world market leader for CBRN (chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear defense) protection.

Over ten million of the company’s Saratoga-branded protective suits and systems, for instance, have so far been supplied in over 40 countries.

Even the most demanding task forces, including Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) inspectors who are confronted with CBRN hazards every day, rely on Saratoga protection from Blücher, as well as 21 out of 28 NATO members.


Meanwhile, the level of water pollution from industrial effluents, as well as residues from pharmaceuticals and chemicals is rising, along with growing demands worldwide for both effective drinking water and increasingly cleaner water for industrial production processes.

Whether caused by pharmaceutical or organic micro elements, Saratech technology guarantees the highest reliability in successfully filtering it.

The same applies for cleaner air in aircraft or specialized vehicles deployed in environments that are hazardous to health.

Applications for Saratech odor adsorbents can also be found in domestic equipment and air-purifying devices, as well as in demanding industrial production processes that require the cleanest of air environments, such as semiconductor production.

The Saratech high-performance adsorbents and hydrometallurgical technologies of Blücher provide an opportunity to economically use even challenging deposits. Special technologies have now been developed, which enable complex wastes containing metals to be rendered completely harmless.

New exhibitors

An impressive number of new U.S. exhibitors are confirmed for this year’s Filtech, including:

  • Knowlton Industries, Watertown, New York, a leader in wet-laid nonwoven solutions
  • Colorado-based PECOFacet, a global leader in filtration and separation
  • Ithaca, New York-based Porous Materials, with its platforms for the testing of porous materials
  • Nxtgen, Claremore, Oklahoma, which makes a range of nanofiber-treated roll good media for use in industrial and gas turbine inlet filtration

Also new, in name at least, is Berry Plastics, the Charlotte, North Carolina-based Corporation, which is now the world’s leading manufacturer of nonwovens, following its acquisition of PGI/Avintiv. Berry will be displaying its broad range of filter media in Cologne.

In addition to the high-performing materials under the well-known Reemay brand, Berry has recently introduced a new nanofiber-based media called Everist, which is outperforming the competition in terms of enhanced efficiency, lower pressure drop and a 50% higher dirt holding capacity than conventional media, as well as the ability to be pleated on both rotary and blade systems.

The American Filtration & Separation Society (AFS) will also be present for the first time at Filtech this year.