Membrane Distillation


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Morocco's first solar-powered desalination starts up

Morocco's first solar-powered desalination plant has started operations near Marrakech.

Desalination quartet booked for Masdar pilot plants in UAE

Three major contractors in the global desalination business - Abengoa, Degrémont and Sidem/Veolia - together with forward-osmosis developer Trevi Systems, were awarded contracts on 5 May 2014 by Abu Dhabi's Masdar, to each start the construction of a 1,500 m³/d desalination plant as part of Masdar's pilot project announced in 2013.

MD plant using generator heat starts on Maldive island

The world's first desalination unit using waste heat from a power generator with membrane distillation has started up on Guhli island in the Maldives in the Indian Ocean.

Desert community MD trial produces first water

First water was produced in mid-November 2013 by the membrane distillation plant set up in the Great Victoria Desert, Australia, by a team from the National Centre for Excellence in Desalination Australia (NCEDA).

Commercialization moves nearer for memsys MD system

In what memsys CEO, Götz Lange, calls "a clear step towards commercialization of the company's membrane distillation (MD) technology", the Germany/Singapore based company has announced the formation of a Business Development Unit.

MD+VC succeeds at produced-water disposal site

A new desalination technique of membrane distillation (MD) combined with vapour compression (VC) has been pronounced a success in an effort to reduce produced water disposal costs at a Texas disposal well.

GE and memsys in joint MD development accord

Singapore-based membrane distillation (MD) specialist memsys clearwater Pte Ltd has entered into an agreement with GE to jointly develop the technology for the fast-growing oil and gas market.

MD desalination pilot successfully used with waste heat

Results from an Australian trial to demonstrate the potential for a membrane distillation (MD) process to use waste heat from heavy industry to desalinate saline effluent have shown the system can produce high-quality water at temperatures as low as 30°C without an increase in greenhouse-gas emissions.

MD developer seeking US powerplant partners

Swedish membrane distillation (MD) manufacturer Scarab AB is seeking US powerplant operators to allow it to demonstrate the technology's ability to convert waste streams to feedwater using waste heat from turbines and engines.

EDS publishes June solar desalination course program

The European Desalination Society (EDS) has published the program for its three-day intensive course on Desalination With Solar Energy to be held in Almeria, Spain, on 11‑13 June 2014.

Inventor of water technologies Marc Vergnet adjusts the controls on Osmosun, his new solar-powered reverse osmosis desalination system that does not use batteries or energy storage, chemicals, or grid supplies of electricity

Masdar desal pilot: the results so far

Masdar Clean Energy set a target for its pilot projects of one cubic metre of water for every 3.6 kilowatt hours of energy used. This is a particularly challenging target in the Persian Gulf, where salinity is very high, the water temperature is high, it's very shallow, and there's high organic matter.

memsys and Horizon combine to reduce ZLD costs

A pilot trial is due to start in May 2014 of a method to reduce the costs of zero liquid discharge (ZLD) technology at a coal to chemical (CTX) project in northern China.

Qatar researchers trial membrane distillation system

Researchers at Qatar University College of Engineering, in collaboration with a team from petrochemical giant, ConocoPhillips' Global Water Sustainability Centre, have developed low- carbon desalination technology, membrane distillation.

Developing membrane distillation for desalination brines

Membrane distillation is the subject of a great deal of research and development around the world, as D&WR has often reported. In Qatar, the emphasis is on using it to produce a high-quality distillate from high-salinity brines rejected from thermal desalination. The team has proved the viability of the process and is now testing it under real field conditions This article first appeared in the August/September 2013 issue of Desalination & Water Reuse magazine.

Topics and presenters announced for IDA Academy course

The next International Desalination Association (IDA) Academy course, to be held at the International Water Summit in Abu Dhabi on 21‑22 January 2014 will feature Integration of Hybrid Technologies with Renewable Energy to Improve the Sustainability of Water Desalination and Sustainable Operation with Advanced Membrane Filtration.

AMTA's awards recognise individuals for a variety of contributions to the field of membrane technology

AMTA unveils annual gongs for membrane experts

The American Membrane Technology Association (AMTA) has conferred its annual roster of awards for membrane specialists, include its Lifetime Service Award, Hall of Fame Awards, and Operator of the Year Award.

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.

Nine water purification projects bag US$ 1.49 million in funding

The US Bureau of Reclamation has selected nine projects to receive US$ 1.49 million under its Desalination and Water Purification Research programme.

Registration opened for next IDA Academy courses

The International Desalination Association has opened registration for the next IDA Desalination Academy courses in Singapore on 16‑19 September 2013.

The CoGenera SunPac concentrating photovoltaic thermal hybrid solar system will drive the plant.

Hybrid solar energy for Navajo Nation membrane distillation project

The University of Arizona and the US government's Bureau of Reclamation are developing a project combining advanced water treatment in the form of membrane distillation with hybrid solar energy to provide water supplies for the Native-American area, Navajo Nation, in the south-west USA. Installation is currently under way and the system will be tested for a year from March 2013. This article first appeared in the November/December 2012 issue of Desalination & Water Reuse magazine.

Agreement signed for memsys MD use in sugar industry

Memsys of Singapore/Germany has signed an exclusive global agreement with Concord Enviro of India for use of its membrane distillation (MD) system to treat molasses wastewater from the sugar industry.

UK researchers unveils solar-powered brine treatment process

A UK academic has proposed a new solar energy-driven process to convert brine produced by desalination plants. The process also removes carbon dioxide dissolved in the oceans ocean to reduce its damaging environmental impacts according to the researcher at Birmingham's Aston University.

Abengoa forms desalination research partnership in Abu Dhabi

Spanish energy sustainability company Abengoa has formed a research partnership with the Masdar Institute and the Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company to optimize membrane distillation technology for the treatment of reverse osmosis brines.

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.

The memsys desalination plant at Singapore's Marina Barrage.

Vacuum-driven MD breakthrough promised by memsys

Vacuum-driven membrane distillation (MD) delivers high flux and true multi-effect distillation with very good energy recovery. The process runs at low temperature levels and is fully modular. This article describes the background of the development of the memsys company, membrane distillation, its specific advantages and potential applications, current and planned demonstration plants, and MD s future role in desalination. This article first appeared in the February/March 2011 issue of Desalination & Water Reuse magazine.

CDA/EDS seeking Qingdao desalination abstracts by 15 March

Abstracts for the 2011 Qingdao International Desalination Conference in China (20-23 June 2011) must received by 15 March 2011 with final papers by 10 May 2011.

Work starts on Queensland desalination plant

Preliminary work is beginning at the start of 2010 for a desalination plant to serve the Agnes Water and Seventeen Seventy communities in Queensland, Australia.

Saudi strikes desalination deal with Korea in bid to stem foreign influence

Saudi Arabia's Saline Water Conversion Corporation (SWCC) has signed a deal with Korea for access to the latest seawater desalination technologies in a bid to reduce foreign influence on the kingdom's power and water industries.

Solar pond and membrane distillation merger in Nevada University

Membrane distillation (MD) is a thermally driven membrane separation process that involves evaporation of volatile constituents (water in desalination applications) through a hydrophobic, microporous membrane. The vacuum-enhanced MD process recently patented by researchers at the University of Nevada, Reno in the United States has now been coupled with some equally interesting research at the university on solar ponds. The configuration is now being studied using a small-scale indoor pond and new capillary MD membranes. While MD has been studied in the past in conjunction with solar ponds, new membranes, new techniques and new auxiliary technologies are improving MD, solar ponds and their synergistic combination. This article was first published in the February/March 2010 issue of Desalination & Water Reuse magazine.

The membrane distillation process

The coming of membrane distillation technology

Membrane distillation (MD) is a unit operation that uses hydrophobic membranes as a barrier for contaminated water from which mass transport of vapor is driven by differences in vapor pressure. MD does not require a mechanical pressure pump, and temperature levels are such that low-grade heat sources may be used to supply the required energy for the process. It is therefore ideal for treatment of industrial effluents and for desalination in co-generation with thermal solar power plants. This article assesses membrane distillation, a technology that the author believes is becoming increasingly relevant, particularly for use with renewable energies and in less developed countries. The recent promotion of the Desertec energy creation project in the Sahara is just one opportunity he sees for the technology.

Solar membrane distillation ideal for remote areas

Fraunhofer ISE develops solar thermally driven compact desalination systems based on membrane distillation for a capacity range between 100 and 500 L/d and larger system capacities up to 10 m³/d. A modular design of systems is important in order to resize them to a wide range of user profiles. Membrane distillation (MD) is a separation technique which combines a thermally driven distillation process with a membrane separation process. The thermal energy is used for phase changing of liquid water into vapor. Unlike membranes for reverse osmosis (RO), which have a pore diameter in the range of 0.1 to 3.5 nm, membranes for MD generally have a pore diameter of 0.1- 0.4 m. The separation effect of these polymer membranes is based on their hydrophobic nature. Apart from some experimental systems, the MD-technique has not been used for desalination up to now, but, for implementation of solar-driven stand-alone desalination systems, it holds important advantages. The article describes two developed types of solar-driven MD system and discusses their installation and economic performance. The full article first appeared in the November/December 2008 issue of D&WR magazine


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