Fouling


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Melbourne researchers' anti fouling membrane claim

Researchers from the Melbourne School of Engineering at the University of Melbourne have developed what they claim to be an anti fouling microfiltration system that outstrips existing technology on energy efficiency with negligible compromise on performance.

Live Webinar Masterclass - Membrane Fouling Control

The first in a series of Desalination and Water Reuse Masterclass webinars will run on 12 February this year. Each event will offer practical, readily applicable guidance delivered by an expert in the topic covered.

Researchers uncover new membrane fouling mechanism

Researchers have uncovered "an additional reverse osmosis (RO) membrane fouling mechanism" arising from organic compounds present in ultrafiltration (UF) permeate during wastewater desalination.

SEDA to hold May Day membrane cleaning workshop

The Southeast Desalting Association is holding a workshop in Cape Coral, Florida, on 1 May 2014 focused on reverse osmosis (RO) membrane cleaning.

SEDA December workshop to look at chemicals for RO

The Southeast Desalting Association (SEDA) has announced a technology transfer workshop on Chemical Treatment for Reverse Osmosis (RO) to be held in Palm Bay, Florida, in December 2013.

Nearly 200 abstracts received for AMTA/AWWA conference

The American Membrane Technology Association (AMTA) says that 193 abstracts have been received for its joint conference next year with the American Water Works Association (AWWA) in San Antonio, Texas.

AWA to hold membrane fouling master class

Membrane fouling is to be the subject of a master class to be held by the Australian Water Association (AWA) in November 2012.

H2O Innovation commissions pathfinding Indian membrane plant

Canada's H2O Innovation announced on 31 January 2011 that its Indian joint venture, H2O Innovation India Ltd, had commissioned the 7,000 m³/d membrane water treatment system it had designed for Larsen & Toubro Heavy Engineering (L&T) in Gujarat state.

MIT membrane start-up completes funding round

The conclusion of an initial round of funding for Clean Membranes Inc, a start-up company based in Lexington, USA, will permit progress on development of a new generation of non-fouling membranes usable for sea and brackish water desalination.

Korean membranes chosen for Iranian process water

CSM fouling-resistant reverse-osmosis membranes, manufactured by Woongjin Chemical of South Korea, have been selected for the Fajr Phase II Project in Iran to help reduce biological fouling and scaling.

H₂O Innovation bags Clearlogx

Membrane filtration company, H₂O Innovation, as acquired all of the assets of control technology specialist, Clearlogx, that relate to its control technology and its specialty coagulants.

IDA 2015 World Congress draws 1,700 delegates

More than 1,700 delegates from 63 countries attended the International Desalination Association's (IDA's) 2015 World Congress held in San Diego recently according to the association's key metrics published this week. Awards for papers and presentations topped US$ 30,000.

Masterclass webinar to look at combining reuse and desalination using forward osmosis

Award-winning researcher, Gaetan Bandin, will present the next Desalination and Water Reuse Masterclass Webinar on 30 June looking at opportunities and challenges for forward osmosis and pressure assisted osmosis (PAO) to combine water reuse and desalination.

Singapore's PUB draws curtain on algae

Singapore's national water agency PUB has for the first time installed silt curtains at the waters off Tuaspring and Singspring desalination plants, to protect them from damaging fouling of their reverse osmosis membranes by mounting levels of algae in the water.

The new manual, Harmful Algal Blooms and Desalination: A Guide to Impacts, Monitoring, and Management, synthesizes knowledge from multiple case studies

First guide to harmful algal blooms launches at IDA World Congress 2017

UNESCO Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) and Middle East Desalination Research Centre (MEDRC) introduced the world's first guide to harmful algal blooms (HABs) on Tuesday 17 October 2017, at IDA World Congress.

A grand conference is AMTA/ AWWA's fourth

One thousand attendees turned up at Orlando, Florida for the fourth Membrane Technology Conference (MTC) hosted jointly by the American Water Works Association (AWWA) and American Membrane Technology Association (AMTA) last week.

AMTA NEWS Novel sub-nanofiltration ceramic membrane production uses DNA

A novel method for creating ceramic reverse osmosis membranes with sub-nanometre pores by using the genetic material, DNA, as a template former, overcomes the poor reproducibility encountered in conventional methods according to the developer of the technology, Cerahelix.

Microbubble membrane cleaning stems fouling

In spring 2014 we published an article on how Genesys developed its microbubble-based membrane cleaning system. In this follow up Genesys presents results from a case study of the technology in a wastewater reverse osmosis plant. This article first appeared in the February 2015 issue of Desalination & Water Reuse magazine.

Kuwait plant to get GE membranes

Kuwait's Sulaibiya wastewater treatment and reclamation plant will be upgraded with GE's water reuse technology.

'I am halfway between the lab and the boardroom on this,' Tim Harper, CEO, G2O Water Technologies

Q&A: Tim Harper, G20 Water Technologies

Former European Space Agency scientist Tim Harper, now chief executive of G2O Water Technologies, talks graphene-coated membranes

Membrane market growth to run until 2020

The fruits of growing research and development in forward osmosis for desalination are highlighted in a recent sector report as drivers of growth in the market for membrane separation technologies running to at least 2020.

Cost, regulation, and water scarcity are driving a shift in mindset toward resource recovery in brine treatment

The Long Read: Where's the innovation in brine treatment?

As water scarcity bites and the drive to recycle water grows, the focus on recovering clean water and other resources from brine is sharpening. The challenge is particularly pertinent for industrial operators.

Researchers share industry prize for fouling research

Doctoral students, Ariel Atkinson of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Erin Partlan of Clemson University, have received the 2014 Fellowship for Membrane Technology award from the American Membrane Technology Association (AMTA) and the National Water Research Institute (NWRI) for research in membrane fouling.

Nine desalination studies bag US$ 1.4 million funding

Nine research projects and pilot studies will share US$1.4 million in funding under a desalination and water purification research programme set up by the US Bureau of Reclamation.

Researchers cast doubt on economics of osmotic power

New research findings have questioned the economics of power production from pressure retarded osmosis (PRO).

Figure 1: Fabric in hollow fine fibre permeator of Du Pont Permasep

Why MFI is edging SDI as a fouling index

PARTICULATE FOULING has plagued reverse osmosis (RO) systems since their first use in desalination and remains a persistent issue today for RO and other pressure-driven systems such as microfiltration (MF), ultrafiltration (UF) and nanofiltration (NF). In the early 1960s, the Du Pont company/Permasep Product successfully launched the hollow-fine-fibre (HFF) permeator onto the desalination market, where it dominated for several decades. A well-known weakness of this permeator was its vulnerability to fouling. Initially, this vulnerability was attributed to suspended and colloidal matter in the feed water, ie, particulate fouling. Therefore, Du Pont developed, the Silt Density Index (SDI), initially named the Fouling Index, as a parameter to characterize the fouling potential of the feedwater for permeators. The fouling mechanism turned out to be more complicated than just fouling of the membrane surface as initially assumed. Gradually it became clear that the fouling was initiated by local clogging of the woven or non-woven fabric between the fibres, which is needed to ensure equal flow distribution of the feed water (see Figure 1). This article first appeared in the issue of Desalination & Water Reuse magazine.

Hydranautics' new CPA7-LD membrane is designed to produce low permeate TDS make-up water for power stations, and the semi-conductor and pharmaceutical industries.

Hydranautics introduces two new spiral wound RO membranes

Hydranautics has brought out two new spiral wound reverse osmosis membranes for demanding industrial and municipal applications.

Tubular membranes replaced at South Africa coal plant

More than 2,500 tubular reverse-osmosis (TRO) membrane modules have been replaced at a South African coal-to-liquids refinery by Veolia‑owned Membratek in a subcontract.

Desalitech and Veolia tie up Mexican MoU

Desalitech Inc has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Veolia Water Solutions & Technologies to bring advanced cost‑effective high‑recovery water solutions to Mexico and additional countries worldwide.

Registration open for WateReuse research conference

Registration is open for the 18th Annual Water Reuse & Desalination Research Conference to be held by the WateReuse Research Foundation in Las Vegas on 19-20 May 2014.

Water Planet to use 3M polymer in membrane manufacture

Water Planet Engineering (WPE), a spinoff company from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), has entered into a joint development agreement with global company 3M to explore commercial production of a new polymer material with widespread industrial application.

EDS launches 2014 desalination courses with Rome event

The European Desalination Society (EDS) kicks off a list of six events in its series of Master Courses with a three-day course in Rome, Italy, on Membrane Technology, Process & System Design on 3‑5 March 2014.

2014 Oman conference to look at HABs and desalination

An international conference on Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs) & Desalination is to be held in Muscat, Oman, in April 2014.

Texas treatment company spins off frac water firm

A company called Green Hydro LLC has been spun off by Texas-based Advanced Hydro Inc to use desalination to address increasing demand for water use in hydraulic fracturing.

Padre Dam plant in drought-hit California has achieved industry-leading recovery rates

Desalitech recognised for topping water recovery rate records

Desalitech has won the IDA Industry Technology and Innovation Leader in Water Reuse and Conservation Award of Distinction, thanks in part to its work at Padre Dam Advanced Water Reclamation plant in Southern California.

Woongjin backs Californian FO membrane‑maker

Korean membrane company Woongjin Chemical Company has signed an agreement with California startup Porifera Inc providing investment for the Silicon Valley company to develop, manufacture and commercialize forward osmosis (FO) membranes at high volume.

IDE/Clean Harbours tie-up aims at oil sands clean-up

Desalination designer and constructor IDE Technologies Ltd and US waste and wastewater specialist Clean Harbors today announced a joint research and development (R&D) program to increase the availability and reliability of mechanical vapor compression (MVC) evaporators for treating oil sands produced water in Alberta, Canada.

North Sea gas RO package supplied by UK company

A containerised reverse‑osmosis (RO) desalination package is to be supplied for an unmanned gas platform in the North Sea by Salt Separation Services of Rochdale, UK.

IWA extends deadline for Toronto membrane papers

The International Water Association (IWA) has extended the deadline for submission of papers for the 7th IWA Specialised Membrane Technology Conference & Exhibition for Water & Wastewater Treatment & Reuse.

EDS lists desalination courses for 2013

The European Desalination Society (EDS) has released a complete list of its courses for 2013. EDS has been giving training certificates since 2003 to over 400 participants from all over the world.

Four workshops to precede AMTA / AWWA conference

There are now four preconference workshops prior to the Membrane Technology Conference & Exposition being held by the American Membrane Technology Association (AMTA) and the American Water Works Association (AWWA) in San Antonio, Texas, at the end of February 2013.

SCMA launching membrane operator certification

The South Central Membrane Association (SCMA) is kicking off a membrane operators certification program in January 2013 featuring the first of four modules being developed by the Southeast Desalting Association (SEDA) with SCMA and other affiliates of the American Membrane Technology Association (AMTA).

Two workshops ahead for SEDA in January

The Southeast Desalting Association (SEDA) is holding two technology transfer workshops in Florida at the end of January 2013.

EDS publishes desalination courses line-up for 2013

Five courses for the first half of 2013 have been announced by the European Desalination Society (EDS). All except one will be staged in Genoa, Italy.

IDA announces lecturers for next Academy session

The International Desalination Association (IDA) has announced the line-up for the next one-day course in its Desalination Academy, which will take place on 5 December 2012 in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, alongside the Saudi Water & Power Forum.

PolyCera could

Water Planet introduces "revolutionary" new polymeric membranes

Water Planet has launched its new membrane filtration product, PolyCera, which it claims outpaces the current range of polymeric membranes, and costs less.

Evoqua lands five deals totalling US$ 20 million for its clarification system

In deals totalling more than US$ 20 million, five US municipalities have ordered Evoqua Water Technologies' BioMag ballasted biological treatment system for their wastewater treatment plants.

Singapore setting for Desalitech pilot plant

A 200 m³/d pilot reverse-osmosis (RO) water treatment unit is to be set up in Singapore by Desalitech Ltd under a contract from a client who has yet to be named.

EDS adds SDI Workshop to Barcelona events

The European Desalination Society has added a workshop on the Silt Density Index to the satellite events around its upcoming Barcelona conference, the society confirmed in an announcement on 12 March 2012.

Jack August to give AWWA/AMTA keynote speech

Dr Jack L August Jr, historian and executive director of the Barry Goldwater Center for the Southwest and visiting scholar in legal history at Snell & Wilmer LLP will be keynote speaker at the AWWA/AMTA Membrane Technology Conference & Exposition, which opens in Pheonix, Arizona, next week.

Pilot vapour-recompression plant tackles oil and gas water

A pilot project to treat produced water from oil and gas operations in southern Saskatchewan, Canada, has been initiated by Purestream Technology of Salt Lake City, USA, using its advanced vapour recompression (AVARA) system.

Conwed in feed spacer study

Plastic netting maker, Conwed, has provided its products for a study into options for developing and testing of feed spacers in reverse osmosis (RO) by numerical modelling, three- dimensional (3D) printing of feed spacers and experimental membrane fouling simulator studies.

Agnihotri elected to board of ThermoEnergy Corp

Dr Dileep Agnihotri, the CEO and president of Advanced Hydro Inc, a company set up to commercialise a novel antifouling membrane coating technology at the University of Texas - Austin, has joined the board of ThermoEnergy Corp, a Massachusetts-based company engaged in development and sales of municipal and industrial wastewater-recovery and clean power-generation technologies.

Measuring seawater and brine salinity in seawater reverse osmosis

In 2007 and 2008, Desalination & Water Reuse published a brace of articles on the subject of membrane fouling evaluation using the Silt Density Index and the Modified Fouling index. One of those authors addressed the IDA Congress in Perth in September 2011 on work she has been doing since then looking at salinity and total dissolved solids. She has updated and abbreviated that paper for D&WR. This article first appeared in the November/December 2011 issue of Desalination & Water Reuse magazine.

EDS desalination course dates for 2012 published

The European Desalination Society (EDS) has published dates for its series of courses for 2012, which will take place in February, April and June.

USBF/MBR system allows Canadian wastewater reuse

A wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) expansion featuring an upward sludge blanket filter (USBF) combined with a membrane bioreactor (MBR) has been completed at Snug Cove on Bowen Island in British Columbia, Canada.

IDA lifetime achievement award for Toray's Kurihara

A lifetime achievement award to Dr Masaru Kurihara of Toray Membranes was awarded by the International Desalination Association at its awards banquet which closed the IDA World Congress in Perth, Australia on 8 September 2011.

GE expands HERO licensing agreement

GE Power & Water announced on 1 February 2011 that it has completed a new expanded licensing agreement to allow it to continue offering High Efficiency Reverse Osmosis (HERO™) systems to help more of its industrial customers increase their water usage efficiency and reuse capacity.

ZLD wastewater pilot makes first water in Beijing

A pilot NanoClear™ zero-discharge wastewater treatment plant in Beijing has just produced its first water, according to developer Dais Analytic Corporation.

Desalitech wins zero liquid deal in China

Desalitech has won a deal to supply a high-efficiency, ultrapure water treatment system for Novelis' aluminium production facility in Changzhou, China to help comply with a regulatory requirement for zero-liquid discharge (ZLD) in applicable process wastewaters. 

Slimline MBR is first product from LG Electronics

Only two months after announcing it was entering the water membrane business, LG Electronics (LG) unveiled its first wastewater treatment solution, a membrane bioreactor, on 25 November 2010.

EDS posts desalination courses for early 2011

The European Desalination Society has posted a half-year series of courses on its website for 2011 related to water desalination and membrane technology. All the courses will take place in Pegli, close to Genoa, Italy, at the Hotel Mediterranée.

A 500 m³/day MSF/FBE evaporator, Isle of Texel, Netherlands.

MSF/FBE seawater desalination and fouling hypersaline wastewater treatment

The Multi-Stage Flash/Fluidised Bed Evaporator (MSF/FBE) is not strictly a new technology, but the applications suggested in this article are new. It is claimed to halve the costs of distillate production compared with most advanced conventional MSFs and is suggested as a way to expand existing MSF plants. Another application is the wind-powered MSF/FBE for distillate production at remote underdeveloped locations. This article also introduces a Vapour Compression/Fluidised Bed Evaporator (VC/FBE) for the treatment and concentration of saline and severely fouling industrial and mining (waste)water streams. This article first appeared in the August/September 2010 issue of Desalination & Water Reuse magazine.

4th Membranes & Desalination event set for Gold Coast

The Membranes and Desalination Specialty IV Conference, to be held in Gold Coast on 11-12 February 2011 by the Australian Water Association, has a problem solving focus.

Dow project seeks to promote reuse

Dow Water & Process Solutions, is participating in one of ten European Commission-funded projects that aim to stimulate innovation and improve cohesion in Europe's water reuse sector.

Pretreatment course scheduled by EDS for May 2010

The European Desalination Society (EDS) on 15 January 2010 announced a four-day course on Pretreatment, membrane fouling and scaling to be held in Genoa, Italy, on 31 May - 3 June 2010.

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.

IDA releases more Congress details

More details have been released about the program for the 2009 World Congress of the International Desalination Association (IDA), which will take place during 7-12 November 2009 in Dubai.

Three desalination workshops follow IDA World Congress

Three different aspects of desalination will be covered in workshops announced on 10 September 2009 by the International Desalination Association (IDA), which will follow its upcoming World Congress in Dubai.

Furukawa and Glater enter AMTA Hall of Fame

Two very popular admissions to the American Membrane Technology's Hall of Fame were announced at the association's 2009 conference and exhibition in Austin, Texas, on 15 July 2009.

Toray to set up desalination/reuse R&D lab in Singapore

The establishment of Toray Water Technology Laboratory (TWTL) in Singapore to conduct research and development of water treatment technologies was announced by Toray Industries Inc on 24 June 2009. The Nanyang Environment & Water Research Institute (NEWRI) at Nanyang Technological University (NTU) will be Toray's partner for its research activities in Singapore.

EDR plant at Abrera

Large EDR river desalination plant opens in Spain

GE Water and Aigües Ter-Llobregat (ATLL) of Spain announced on 19 May 2009 the opening of the 220,000 m³/d electrodialysis reversal (EDR) brackish water desalination plant on the Llobregat river.

Desalination course just misses quake

Earth tremors felt during the European Desalination Society's fouling and scaling course in L'Aquila, Italy, last week, were obviously precursors of the major earthquake that struck the town at 03:30 on 6 April causing over 190 deaths.

AdVE desalination pilot plant approved for Laredo

A 50,000 gpd (190,000 L/d) advanced vapor compression desalination (AdVE) pilot plant is to be constructed and operated for the City of Laredo, Texas. The City Council has approved a US$ 1.6 million joint proposal by Terrabon LLC and the Texas Engineering Experiment Station (TEES).

Pilot tests for dopamine anti-fouling technology

Seed capital totalling US$ 500,000 for the development of a dopamine-based membrane anti-fouling technology has been raised by Advanced Hydro Inc (AIC), based in Austin, Texas, USA, the company announced on 6 January 2009.

First MOT plant produces water in Gibraltar

The first desalination plant to employ Manipulated Osmotic Technology (MOT) has produced its first water in Gibraltar. Modern Water, the UK company that installed the plant, also announced on 15 September that it has an agreement to install another MOT plant in Oman.

Combining Forward Osmosis with Reverse Osmosis

A combination of forward osmosis with reverse osmosis could facilitate the treatment of some high fouling wastewaters. The system uses brine to draw water from the wastewater without high pressure or turbulence. Key element is the membrane's ability to allow rapid passage of water without much internal concentration polarization. The diluted draw solution can then be desalinated by reverse osmosis. The Two-Way Osmosis or TWO system may also be usable in very remote areas, where seawater ponds can be built for evaporative recovery of salt. Catalyx is designing a pilot system (patent pending) to desalinate seawater without external electric power. This article was published in the May/June 2009 issue of Desalination & Water Reuse.

Desalination using forward osmosis with nanofiltration membranes

Forward osmosis (FO) is an emerging membrane technology, often used for desalination. Like reverse osmosis (RO), FO uses a semi-permeable membrane to separate water from dissolved solutes. The semi-permeable membrane acts as a barrier that allows water to pass through while blocking salts. Generally, any dense, non-porous, selectively permeable material can be used as a membrane for FO. Professor Chung invented a novel polybenzimidazole (PBI) nanofiltration (NF) membrane with a narrow pore size and high flux for the FO process. PBI was chosen mainly because of its robust mechanical strength and excellent chemical stability. However, at high ionic strength (normal in FO applications) and normal operational pH values, the charge of the membrane surface is neutral, leading to a decrease in electrostatic repulsion between the membrane surface and electrolytes to be rejected. Consequently, monovalent salts rejection decreases. Ideal NF membranes for FO would be highly negatively charged at most pH values. Additionally, these membranes are hydrophobic and have a propensity to foul during operation. Therefore, this collaboration is performing research to improve the separation performance of the PBI FO membrane by (1) lowering membrane fouling via chemical modification, and (2) increasing its monovalent salt-rejection via membrane surface modifications. Since these properties are given to a porous PBI NF membrane instead of the conventionally used dense RO membranes, this project has the potential to revolutionize the field of desalination using FO. Development of a desalination process technology using the FO route has the potential to achieve up to a 75% decrease in costs and energy consumption in desalination, in comparison with conventional thermal or RO processes. This technology is still undergoing research. Acknowledgments The source of funding was the National Science Foundation, NSF OISE 0832894. This article appeared in D&WR magazine's May/June 2009 issue.

Installation of a module at Th&eacutelus, France

MBR upgrades mean less maintenance and longer life

In recent years, MBR membranes have evolved to the point where they require less maintenance and at the same time have a longer useful life. An added benefit comes from the more advanced designs that consume significantly less energy and lower operating costs. The new Puron module from Koch Membrane Systems Inc (KMS) is a second generation MBR membrane module that employs hollow fibers. Like several other second generation membranes, the high-strength fibers that comprise the Puron modules also overcome the fiber breakage problems typical of first generation systems that use non-braided fibers. Second generation systems position the membrane bioreactor industry for even more rapid growth. They offer several advantages, including improved performance in terms of reduced fouling and lower energy consumption. They are also more robust than first generation systems and are usually designed with compatibility in mind to minimize retrofitting costs. This article appeared in D&WR magazine's August/September 2008 issue.

Antiscalant removes need for acid in wastewater RO

Field trials of a new scale-inhibiting chemical for use with reverse-osmosis membranes in wastewater reuse plants show that, at a low dose rate, it can increase the solubility of calcium phosphate by over one hundred times, obviating the need for using dangerous and costly acid. Current design practices for large effluent reuse projects are focused on a combination of removing phosphate by precipitation prior to the RO plant and acid dosing to reduce pH to 6.0 and hence increase calcium phosphate solubility to prevent fouling. Conventional antiscalants are ineffective at high phosphate and high recovery rates, and the only other option has been to dose large quantities of acid to reduce feed pH to below 6.2. Reducing the pH from 7.5 to 6.0 on a 2,700 m /day plant would require 0.5 to 1 ton of 95% sulphuric acid per day. Handling this quantity of acid is an environmental, health, safety and logistical problem that many plant operators would like to move away from. The results from the field trials show that using a highly active threshold inhibiting antiscalant such as Genesys PHO at a low dose rate of 2 -5 mg/L can increase the solubility of calcium phosphate by over one hundred times. This article appeared in D&WR magazine's August/September 2008 issue.


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