Membrane Distillation, greenhouse gas


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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.

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.

Morocco's first solar-powered desalination starts up

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

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.

Judge rejects lawsuit against water authority over Carlsbad emissions

US water conservation group, San Diego Coastkeeper, this week failed in its bid to sue the San Diego County Water Authority for alleged environmental negligence in its water supply projects. Coastkeeper claimed the authority made inadequate provision for the environmental impact of its water supply schemes including the giant Carlsbad project currently nearing completion.

China's 2020 desalination plans could cause emissions surge

China's 2020 ambition to produce drinking water at 3 million m³day from desalination threatens to increase carbon emissions through increased use of largely coal-fired power generation according to the World Resources Institute (WRI). The institute said the energy penalty could be offset by some 75% by greater use of water reuse.

Carlsbad desalination greenhouse-gas plan reaffirmed by CARB

The California Air Resources Board (CARB) has reiterated its support for the energy minimization and greenhouse-gas reduction plan proposed by Poseidon Resources for the Carlsbad desalination project.

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

The new power and water facility is expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions at EGA's smelter by 10 per cent

EGA plans $272 million power and water plant at Jebel Ali

Mubadala and Dubal Holding are developing a new power and desalination facility at Emirates Global Aluminium (EGA)'s smelter in Jebel Ali, Dubai.

The project site is U-shaped, and is surrounded by lots filled by industrial operators and their associated infrastructure

Jebel Ali project is a new direction for DEWA and Besix

The $237 million contract awarded by Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) for a seawater reverse osmosis (SWRO) desalination plant represents a big step for the client, and for Besix Concessions & Assets, which won the work in partnership with Acciona Agua.

California county mulls tapping into nuclear plant desalination

As part of its plans to combat ongoing severe drought, California's San Luis Obispo County (SLO) is considering the construction of a 10 km pipeline to tap into the spare capacity of a desalination plant currently providing only the needs of a nuclear power plant.

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.

California district probes impact of possible giant desalination plant

California's West Basin Municipal Water District board of directors has voted to begin an environmental impact report as part of its research towards the construction of a seawater desalination facility in the South Bay.

California gives Monterey environmental thumbs up

The California Public Utilities Commission's recently published draft environmental impact report on the Monterey Peninsula Water Project and has rated the desalination project as the environmentally preferred of a number of options scrutinised as possible solutions to the region's drought problems.

Masdar city, Masdar Institute, Laborelec, and Degrémont to collaborate in renewable-powered desalination project

Abu Dhabi university, Masdar Institute of Science and Technology, has unveiled recently its research collaboration with three leading energy and clean technology corporations in a research project supporting the development of a full-scale, completely solar-powered, seawater reverse osmosis (SWRO) desalination plant in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

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.

Water Corporation cooperates on wave-energy desalination

Western Australia's Water Corporation has signed a cooperation agreement to support the wave-powered seawater desalination pilot project proposed by Carnegie Wave Energy Ltd.

Santa Cruz desalination EIR comment deadline in July

The draft environmental impact report (EIR) for the 2.5 MGD (9,500 m³/d) seawater desalination plant for the greater Santa Cruz area in California, USA, which was released on 13 May 2013, will be available for public comment until 15 July 2013.

Pacific Institute reports on desalination energy use

The Pacific Institute has published the next instalment of its series on Key Issues For Seawater Desalination in California, this time looking at energy requirements and associated greenhouse gas emissions for desalinated water.

Australian wave-energy desalination pilot to get funding

Australia's Carnegie Wave Energy announced on 28 February 2013 that it had received a government grant of Aus$ 1.27 million (US$ 1.30 million) to support a wave-powered seawater desalination demonstration project.

Asia-Pacific water-recycling conference calls for papers

The Australian Water Association (AWA), an affiliate of the International Desalination Association has collaborated with the Water Services Association of Australia and WateReuse Australia to present the Asia Pacific Water Recycling Conference 2013.

California approves bond issue for Carlsbad desalination

Poseidon Resources has submitted and had approved an application for US$ 780 million in tax-exempt bonds for the Carlsbad seawater desalination project.

IDA publishes program for Gulf desalination and environment seminar

The International Desalination Association has published details of program sessions and topics for its seminar on Desalination and the Gulf: The Relationship between the Environment and Meeting the Region's Water Needs, which will take place in Bahrain on 6-7 December 2010.

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.

The QWE laboratory at Texas A&M at Qatar university.

Qatar initiative seeks sustainable water and energy

An initiative to help bring sustainability to Qatar's water and energy, which will include improved technologies for desalination, efficient reuse and zero-liquid discharge systems, was launched by Texas A&M University at Qatar on 1 February 2010.

US Ex-Im Bank claims first ECA carbon policy

The US Export-Import Bank is claiming to be the first export credit agency (ECA) to adopt a comprehensive carbon policy after announcing on 3 November 2009 a new policy to guide its support of US exports in light of climate change concerns.

Location of the Carlsbad desalination plant by the Encina power station.

Preconstruction for Carlsbad desalination can go ahead

Site demolition and preparation for the Carlsbad Desalination Project can now take place following the issue to Poseidon Resources on 3 November 2009 of its Coastal Development Permit (CDP) from the California Coastal Commission (CCC).

JPL and CalTech to aid LA's water/energy efficiency

The City of Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Department of Water & Power (DWP) and NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) with its managing institution, the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) are combining forces to establish Los Angeles as a powerhouse for demonstrated energy and water innovation.

Hydranautics commits to Climate Registry

Hydranautics/Nitto Denko of California, USA, has become the first US-based desalination membrane manufacturer to join the Climate Registry and commit itself to reporting greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

Reuse highlighted in WSAA urban water roadmap

The volume of water being recycled by the largest water utilities in Australia has increased by 117% since 1999/2000. In addition, it is estimated that, by 2013, 460 million m³/year will be supplied to Australia's growing cities by desalination plants.

"Significant" impacts from Monterey desalination says draft report

Whichever of the three desalination-based proposals for future water supply on the Monterey peninsula in California is eventually implemented, there would be "significant and unavoidable" environmental impacts.

Carlsbad project plan for green SWRO

The largest and most advanced seawater desalination project under development in the USA today is the 189,000 m³/d plant in Carlsbad in southern California. This project is collocated with the Encina coastal power generation station, which currently uses seawater for once-through cooling. The Carlsbad seawater desalination project is developed as a public-private partnership between Poseidon Resources and eight utilities and municipalities in San Diego County. Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions associated with production of desalinated seawater at the Carlsbad project are planned to be mitigated by a portfolio of alternative technologies and measures: from the use of CO2 for water production, green building design and of state-of-the-art technology; to the development of on-site and off-site green energy projects and CO2 sequestration by reforestation and new coastal wetlands. The mix of GHG reduction alternatives will be prioritized and implemented under a Carbon Action Plan which defines a roadmap for carbon-neutral seawater desalination. The full article first appeared in the November/December 2008 issue of D&WR magazine


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