AwwaRF sets B&V to study brackish water desalination in Florida

The unique challenges of desalinating brackish water in Florida, USA, is to be studied in a project sponsored by the American Water Works Association Research Foundation (AwwaRF) and led by engineers Black & Veatch. The study will provide utilities in Florida and similar areas of the world with technology and application process recommendations to make use of additional water resources to meet growing consumer demand.

The study will provide utilities in Florida and similar areas of the world with technology and application process recommendations to make use of additional water resources to meet growing consumer demand.

“There is growing need for affordable and environmentally responsible desalination in many regions of the world,” said Jennifer Warner, project manager for AwwaRF. “Florida is one such region that has access to brackish water sources, but many of these sources also contain high concentrations of natural matter, making desalination more challenging.”

The study will evaluate zero liquid discharge (ZLD) desalination of brackish water with high concentrations of natural organic matter (NOM), a common characteristic of brackish water supplies in Florida. Water resources with high NOM concentrations create unique challenges because the compounds adversely impact the ZLD desalination treatment processes.

“In east-central Florida alone, water demand is expected to increase 84% by 2025,” said Rick Bond, Black & Veatch water process engineer and principal investigator for the project. (See also D&WR Aug/Sept 2008, p63.)


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