Membrane Distillation, Research
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).
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.
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.
Morocco's first solar-powered desalination starts up
Morocco's first solar-powered desalination plant has started operations near Marrakech.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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
Masdar graphene study bags Abu Dhabi research prize
A graphene desalination membrane research project was among six proposals from Abu Dhabi's sustainable technology-focused university, the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology, that each won a AED 2 million (US$ 500,000) Abu Dhabi Education Council Award for Research Excellence.
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.
US Bureau of Reclamation seeks proposals for US$ 1.4 million funds
The US Bureau of Reclamation is seeking proposals under two funding opportunities totalling up to US$ 1.4 million to improve water treatment technologies aimed at increasing water management flexibility. The first opportunity is for research, laboratory studies and the second is for pilot projects.
Seven potable reuse study schemes win US$ 1 million funding
The WateReuse Research Foundation has approved funding for seven new direct potable reuse (DPR) research projects, valued at more than US$ 1 million.
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).
Electrochemical desalination MoU signed in Singapore
A memorandum of understanding (MoU) between Singapore's national water agency, PUB, and Evoqua Water Technologies to further develop electrochemical desalination technology was one of five MoUs signed during Singapore International Water Week, which ended on 5 June 2014.
WateReuse launches video about urban water cycle
The WateReuse Research Foundation announces the release of The Ways of Water, an animated video that presents an overview of the many human interventions in the water cycle and looks at the benefits of some key water provision options including Direct Potable Reuse (DPR).
Hyflux sells half-share of Singapore membrane R&D firm
Singapore's Hyflux Ltd announced on 11 March 2014 that it had agreed with Marmon Water (Singapore) Pte Ltd (MWS) to sell to MWS its entire 50% equity interest in Hyflux Marmon Development Pte Ltd (HMD), a company devoted to membrane/media filtration research.
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.
EDR researcher wins 2013 Channabasappa Scholarship
The International Desalination Association has awarded its 2013 Channabasappa Scholarship to Leila Karimi, a PhD candidate at the Institute for Energy & the Environment, Chemical Engineering Department, New Mexico State University (NMSU).
Chinese commercialize sea-ice desalination process
A Chinese company could be producing at least 1 billion m³ of fresh water by desalination of sea ice by 2023, according to a report by the official Chinese news agency Xinhua on 14 January 2013.
New MEDRC director looks at Middle East cooperation
Ciarán Ó Cuinn, currently executive director for external and strategic affairs at Dublin City University, Ireland, is to become director of the Middle East Desalination Research Center in Oman.
Wade Miller stepping down as WateReuse director
The executive director of the WateReuse Association and the WateReuse Research Foundation, G Wade Miller, announced on 8 August 2013 his resignation from the two organizations effective 31 March 2014.
International projects to feature in NCEDA workshop
Reports from major international projects will form the basis of a Desalination Workshop to be held in Melbourne, Australia, in November 2013 by the National Centre of Excellence in Desalination Australia (NCEDA).
ERD comparison tool developed by WateReuse project
A tool to allow engineers to evaluate commercially available energy-recovery devices (ERDs) for reverse-osmosis (RO) systems has been developed under a research project funded by the WateReuse Research Foundation.
RFP to follow UAE renewable-energy desalination launch
A pilot program to test and develop advanced energy-efficient seawater desalination technologies that could be powered by renewable energy sources was launched on 17 January 2013 by Masdar, the UAE renewable energy company.
Proposals sought for membrane-integrity test method
The WateReuse Research Foundation has issued a Request for Proposals to create a method for testing the integrity of high-pressure membranes used for nanofiltration (NF) and reverse osmosis (RO) in water treatment and desalination.
UF/RO desalination pilot project for Dow/SWCC
The Dow Chemical Company and the Saline Water Conversion Corporation (SWCC) of Saudi Arabia announced on 17 September 2012 a commercial agreement for research collaboration in desalination technologies.
USEPA reuse guidelines to be previewed in webcast
A preview of the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)'s 2012 Guidelines for Water Reuse will be one of two webcasts presented by the WateReuse Research Federation in September 2012.
Foundation seeking desalination PR toolkit
The WateReuse Research Foundation wants to develop a public communication toolkit to assist project sponsors in the preparation of an education and outreach plan associated with the implementation of desalination projects.
MIT's McGovern wins IDA 2012 scholarship award
The International Desalination Association has awarded its 2012 Channabasappa Memorial Scholarship to Ronan McGovern, a PhD candidate at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the United States.
Pacific Institute report lists California desalination plans
The Pacific Institute (PI) has published a list of all the currently proposed seawater desalination plants in California, USA, as a precursor to a new desalination report in 2013.
German firm opens Singapore centre for R&D and UF
Mann+Hummel Singapore, worldwide headquarters of the water business division of the German filtration specialist, on 29 June 2012 opened a new centre and ultrafiltration cartridge production line.
West Basin seeking powerplant site for desalination plant
Two power companies are in talks with Southern California's West Basin Municipal Water District over the 20 MGD (75,700 m³/d) desalination plant planned by the district.
Morillon to direct MEDRC training
Michel Morillon, former CEO and CTO of the 80,000 m³/d Sur seawater reverse osmosis desalination plant project in Oman, has joined the Middle East Desalination Research Center (MEDRC) as director of training.
MEDRC announces 2012 scholarship deadline
The Middle East Desalination Research Center (MEDRC) has announced its 2012 Scholarship Fund for students from the Middle East and North Africa (MENA).
MEDRC to stage World Water Forum event
The Middle East Desalination Research Center (MEDRC) is to stage a side event at the 6th World Water Forum, which takes place in Marseille, France, on 12-17 March 2012.
Australian workshop on desalination intakes and discharges
An international workshop on intakes and discharges for seawater desalination is to be held by the National Centre of Excellence in Desalination Australia is in Adelaide on 16-17 May 2012.
Koreans devoting R&D cash to gas-hydrate desalination
Korea's Minister of Land, Transport & Maritime Affairs, Kwon Do-youp, unveiled "a new paradigm" in desalination development when he announced on 4 October 2011 that Korea was pursuing gas-hydrate desalination.
WRRF calls for research conference abstracts
The WateReuse Research Foundation (WRRF) is accepting abstracts for technical presentations at its 16th Annual Water Reuse & Desalination Research Conference, to be held in San Diego, California, on 4‑5 June 2012.
New research announced as Australian desalination centre opens
Funding for eleven new desalination research projects (see Research News for list) was announced when the Australian National Centre for Excellence in Desalination opened its Aus$ 5 million Desalination Research Facility and Desal Discovery Centre (NCEDA) at Murdoch University's Rockingham campus near Perth.
Radcliffe to chair Australian water recycling committee
Dr John Radcliffe, who currently chairs the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences & Engineering (ATSE) Water Forum, has been appointed chairperson of the Australian Water Recycling Centre of Excellence Research Advisory Committee.
IDA scholarships for PhD students in US and Singapore
The International Desalination Association (IDA) has awarded its Channabasappa Memorial Scholarship for 2011 to Errol M Glenn of the USA and Sim Siang Tze Victor of Singapore.
Minton to lead WRRF research programs
Julie Minton has been appointed director of research programs by the WateReuse Research Foundation (WRRF), which conducts and promotes applied research on water reuse and desalination.
Commission extends Long Beach desalination research permit
The desalination intake and discharge research project being undertaken by the Long Bearch Water Department was granted a five-year extension by the California Coastal Commission on 14 July 2011.
Tianjin selected for 2013 IDA World Desalination Congress
Tianjin, China, is to be the venue for the 2013 World Congress on Desalination & Water Reuse to be held by the International Desalination Association (IDA).
LG Electronics forms water treatment JV with Hitachi
South Korea's LG Electronics and Japan's Hitachi are to establish a joint venture in October 2011 to expand into the water and wastewater treatment industries initially in Korea.
IDA releases advance program for Perth congress
The International Desalination Association has announced the release of the Advance Program for the IDA World Congress on Desalination and Water Reuse, Desalination: Sustainable Solutions for a Thirsty Planet, during 4 - 9 September 2011 in Perth, Australia.
PPCP Toolkit developed by WateReuse foundation
The WateReuse Research Foundation (WRF) has developed a toolkit for briefing elected officials, policy makers, or the general public about the presence of trace concentrations of Pharmaceuticals and Personal Care Products (PPCPs) found in recycled water.
UK water nano group to be launched at February workshop
The programme has been announced for a UK nanotechnology for water event to be held at University College London (UCL) on 15 February 2011, which will provide an official launch for the EcoNano Focus Group.
Renewable-energy desalination community seeks to start association
The renewable-energy (RE) desalination community should organize itself into a body that will represent the sector and lobby for its interests, says a new report.
Palmer set to lead Australian desalination centre
Neil Palmer, currently general manager of technical services at Australia's Osmoflo, will take over late in October as the CEO of the National Centre of Excellence in Desalination (NCED).
Furukawa to talk about Australian desalination centre
Desalination expert David Furukawa is to address the Australian Water Association's South Australia branch about the National Centre of Excellence in Desalination (NCED) of which he is interim chief scientific officer.
Twelve projects announced at Australian desalination centre opening
A project to apply wave energy to seawater desalination was one of 12 projects to receive awards from Australia's National Centre of Excellence in Desalination (NCED) and announced at the centre's opening on 23 July 2010.
New appointments for D&WR Editorial Board members
Two members of the Editorial Board of Desalination & Water Reuse have taken up new appointments.
Kurihara to lead Japanese search for cost-cutting desalination
The Japanese Funding Program for World-Leading Innovative R&D on Science and Technology (FIRST Program) has granted ¥ 2.924 billion (US$ 33 million) to the Mega-Ton Water System project to research and develop new technologies in the water supply industry.
Desalination to grow by 9% up to 2016, says report
Global installed desalination capacity is expected to grow by about 55 million m³/d over the period 2010-2016 at a compound annual growth rate of more than 9%, according to a new report from Pike Research.
WRF becomes WRRF
The WateReuse Foundation announced a change of name to the WateReuse Research Foundation at its research and desalination conference in Tampa, Florida, USA on 24 May 2010
IBM joins in Saudi solar desalination initiative
Saudi Arabia's solar powered desalination initiative, announced in January, is now to involve the ultra-high concentrator photovoltaic (UHCPV) and nanomembrane desalination technologies being jointly developed by IBM and the King Abdulaziz City for Science & Technology (KACST).
Low-temperature distillation technology licensed to Sterling Water
The low-temperature distillation method of desalination developed by the New Mexico State University (NMSU) in the USA has been licensed to Sterling Water LLC of Qatar.
Saudis launch national solar desalination initiative
The King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology announced on 24 January 2010 the launch of the National Initiative for Solar Water Desalination (NISWD) under the patronage of the King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud.
Russia sets up water treatment membrane development project
The Russian Corporation of Nanotechnologies (Rusnano) is to finance a project for producing nanostructured membranes and separation modules for water treatment in various industries.
Funds on the way for Long Beach desalination R&D
Federal US funding for the Long Beach desalination and water-reuse development projects in California now only needs President Obama's signature after the Senate on 15 October 2009 approved the final version of the US$ 33.5 billion 2010 Energy & Water Appropriations bill.
New US Navy RO units 'will use 65% less energy'
The United States Office of Naval Research (ONR) is planning to build prototype desalination units that will use 65% less energy and be 40% smaller by weight than current Navy reverse-osmosis (RO) units, an ONR release on 23 September 2009 predicted.
WERF guidance on indirect reuse contaminant removal
A new report from the Water Environment Research Foundation in the USA concludes that examining multiple barriers of drinking-water systems can help assure the absence of detectable levels of trace organic compounds in recycled water.
NWRI publishes California recycling white paper
The US National Water Research Institute has published a white paper, cosponsored by WateReuse California, which highlights the need for more effort in advancing the use of recycled water in California.
Boron-nitride nanotubes speed desalination, says Australian research
Researchers from The Australian National University (ANU) claim to have discovered a way to speed the desalination of seawater by up to five times using nanotubes made from boron and nitrogen atoms.
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.
New Singapore center will develop desalination/reuse solutions
GE and the National University of Singapore (NUS) are investing US$ 100 million in the Singapore Water Technology Center, which will seek new solutions for low-energy seawater desalination, water reclamation and more efficient water reuse.
Russians to cooperate on Jordan desalination
Desalination plants were included in a nuclear cooperation agreement signed on 22 May 2009 by Russia and Jordan, which also included power stations, research facilities and personnel training centres to be built in Jordan.
Australia's desalination centre sited at Murdoch University
Australia's new National Centre of Excellence in Desalination is to be hosted by Murdoch University's Rockingham campus as a result of a Aus$ 20 million (US$ 15.5 million) award from the federal government.
US bill seeks major desalination research expansion
US Senate hearings began on 10 March 2009 into a bill on the relationship between energy and water which could have wide implications for desalination research, both in the US and internationally.
AQWATEC opens onsite MBR wastewater reuse plant
The Colorado School of Mines (CSM) Advanced Water Treatment Center (AQWATEC) has opened a pilot-scale wastewater reuse facility in February 2009 on the US school's campus in Golden.
B&V find ceramic membranes help water recycling
Ceramic membranes used in conjunction with ozone produce significant benefits for water recycling. Jonathan Clement of Black & Veatch, revealed this research result to the Australian Water Association's (AWA) third specialty conference on membranes and desalination held in Sydney, Australia, on 11-13 February 2009.
MEDRC announces new director and deputy
Netherlands ambassador Ronald Mollinger was officially announced as the new director of the Middle East Desalination Research Center (MEDRC) in Oman on 21 January.
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.