Low-energy, fouling-resistant RO membranes

In 2003, Water Planet founder & principal Eric Hoek conceptualized using super-hydrophilic porous nanoparticles with internal 3-dimensional interconnected pore networks to enhance the permeability and fouling resistance of thin film composite RO membranes.

Despite having proposals rejected by the U.S. National Science Foundation, Environmental Protection Agency, Bureau of Reclamation and Office of Naval Research – in 2004, Hoek secured initial funding from the UCLA Samueli Engineering School and California NanoSystems Institute and later, in 2005, funding by NanoH2O co-founders and angel investors Jim McDermott, Jeff Green and Bob Burke to initiate commercialization of Hoek’s thin film nanocomposite (TFN) membrane technology.

In 2006, Green, Burke and Hoek raised Series A capital from Vinod Khosla, founder of Khosla Ventures, to accelerate commercial efforts.

By 2013, $65M in equity capital had been raised to build out state-of-the-art TFN membrane manufacturing operations in El Segundo, California and to break ground on a second, much larger manufacturing operation in China. In early 2014, LG Chem acquired NanoH2O for $203M, and re-branded as LG Water Solutions.

In 2018, LG Water Solutions was honored with ‘Distinction’ in the “Water Technology Company of the Year at GWI’s 2018 Global Water Awards .