Kuraray Co., Ltd.

  Kuraray Co., Ltd. (Head Office: Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo; President: Hitoshi Kawahara; hereinafter “Kuraray” or the “Company”) hereby announces that it was awarded the Technology Special Award under the 54th Japan Chemical Industry Association (JCIA) Technology Award Program in recognition of its development and industrialization of GL module, a hollow-fiber membrane module for water treatment. This module has an outstanding capability to enable the efficient reuse of wastewater.

1.Overview of GL module

  GL module is a hollow-fiber membrane module that enables the efficient reuse of wastewater due to its superior water permeability as well as its robust ability to treat high turbidity water. Compared to Kuraray’s conventional products, the GL module achieves water permeability approximately five times higher and can be used to treat water that’s ten times more turbid. Conventional wastewater treatment processes require pretreatment systems with membrane filtration. However, the use of the GL module eliminates the need for such pretreatment, thereby simplifying the entire wastewater treatment process and allowing for more efficient reuse of water.
  The superior water permeability exerted by the GL module is thanks to proprietary technology. Kuraray has developed the manufacturing of microporous hollow-fiber membranes through the combination of non-solvent induced phase separation (NIPS) and thermally induced phase separation (TIPS) methods. The product’s powerful ability to treat high turbidity water is due to its unique “one-end free structure” and its “center distributor”. “One-end free structure” means each hollow fiber membrane is sealed individually at the bottom with resin, allowing one end to move freely. The "center distributor” contributes to the sufficient cleaning of the area that accumulates the matter from the turbid water in the hollow fiber membrane module.

GL module units installed at Kuraray’s Kurashiki Plant

GL module

2.Main Contributions

  In recent years, a growing number of businesses have been taking on water recovery and reuse as part of their initiatives to counter water depletion problems and enhance their sustainability efforts. GL module has been used for applications such as the reuse of wastewater in the electronics and food industries, contributing to more effective utilization of water resources. In addition, it’s recognized for its effectiveness in reducing water treatment costs by simplifying the water treatment process for drinking water and industrial water. Consequently, its uses are now expanding into an even broader range of fields. In the future, Kuraray expects the GL module to continue contributing to the resolution of issues society faces, such as global water shortages and water pollution.


・Recovery and reuse of wastewater
・Purification of groundwater, river water and other water sources for drinking and industrial water
・Removal of bacteria and turbidity from water to be used for the manufacturing of food and the cleansing of precision parts
・Pretreatment for and the removal of turbidity before water treatment using reverse osmosis (RO) membranes
・Recovery and condensation of abrasive agents and other valuable substances used in the manufacturing process

4.About the JCIA Technology Award

  Sponsored by the Japan Chemical Industry Association, this award program commends businesses for their achievements in bringing benefits to the chemical industry and contributing to the development of the economy and society through the creation and industrialization of excellent chemical technologies. Kuraray has previously been chosen for a Technology Award for the industrialization of CLARINO™ man-made leather (during the sixth round of the program held in 1973) and a Technology Special Award for the development and industrialization of plastic scintillating fiber (PSF) as a radiation detection material (during the 52nd round held in 2019).