April 27, 2018 in Brown Sheep

New Innovations in Dye Water Recycling

In honor of Earth Day (and Arbor Day) this month, we wanted to share with you some new developments in our water treatment system here at the Brown Sheep mill. You may have read our blog post about How We Recycle Our Dye Water. Since then we’ve continued to improve this system for re-using our dye water and have implemented a brand new pre-filtration system.

First, let me reiterate our reasons for recycling dye water:  zero pollution has always been the ultimate goal of this project, as well as conserving energy and natural resources. In Western Nebraska, we understand the value of water as a limited resource.

The new technology we’ve implemented in our mill was developed in Denmark. This pre-filtration system utilizes silicone carbide membranes, which are more robust than our previous UF (ultra filtration) system. Dye water travels through the membranes, removing small particles, and then continues to be further filtered by reverse osmosis (RO). Clean, filtered water is then re-used and the filtered dye particles are sent to our sealed lagoon.

There are several advantages to this new system: less power is required to run the pumps, so energy is saved. The new system can filter a larger volume. Additionally, energy in the form of heat is conserved; dye water is hot when filtered, then returns to be re-used without having to be completely re-heated. This system creates a vacuum on one side to pull water through the membranes – so less electricity is required for filtration.

We could get into many more technical details here, but the big picture is this: our new pre-filtration system allows us to more efficiently recycle & reuse water as well as conserve energy in several forms. This means you can feel good about the environmental impact when you choose our U.S.-made yarns. We’re proud to continue to innovate and improve the systems in place for responsibly producing the yarns you know and love.


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