Veolia and NanoH2O hook up to test new membranes

Veolia Water Solutions & Technologies and NanoH2O announced a five-year partnership on 10 November 2009 at the International Desalination Association’s World Congress in Dubai.

The aim of the partnership is to test and pilot NanoH2O’s thin film nanocomposite (TFN) membrane in 8 in modules in a variety of seawater conditions around the world.

NanoH2O CEO Jeff Green told D&WR that the company had been testing a 4 in version of its membrane at the US Navy’s Port Hueneme site in California since early 2008. Using a skid with a variety of configurations of up to ten modules, Green said that the membrane had shown very stable performance and stood up to conventional cleaning very well.

NanoH2O enhances current polymer-based membranes with nanostructured material encapsulated in a polyamide dense film layer. The result, says the company, is a wide array of advantageous membrane characteristics including improved permeability or flux while maintaining requisite salt and contaminant rejection, both passive and active fouling resistance, as well as flexible membrane performance to address specific water chemistries.

An additional advantage, Green discovered, was that the membrane was very little affected during a “red tide” incident and showed only a minimal drop in flux. This is because, says Green, the construction of the material provides a much smoother surface than conventional membranes, while retaining its hydrophilic qualities.