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Title: Raising the Bar: Increased Hydraulic Pressure Allows Unprecedented High Power Densities in Pressure-Retarded Osmosis

Abstract

Pressure-retarded osmosis (PRO) has the potential to generate sustainable energy from salinity gradients. PRO is typically considered for operation with river water and seawater, but a far greater energy of mixing can be harnessed from hypersaline solutions. This study investigates the power density that can be obtained in PRO from such concentrated solutions. Thin-film composite membranes with an embedded woven mesh were supported by tricot fabric feed spacers in a specially designed crossflow cell to maximize the operating pressure of the system, reaching a stable applied hydraulic pressure of 48 bar (700 psi) for more than 10 h. Operation at this increased hydraulic pressure allowed unprecedented power densities, up to 60 W/m(2) with a 3 M (180 g/L) NaCl draw solution. Experimental power densities demonstrate reasonable agreement with power densities modeled using measured membrane properties, indicating high-pressure operation does not drastically alter membrane performance. Our findings exhibit the promise of the generation of power from high-pressure PRO with concentrated solutions.

Authors:
; ;
Publication Date:
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Advanced Research Projects Agency - Energy (ARPA-E)
OSTI Identifier:
1211144
DOE Contract Number:  
DE-AR0000306
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Journal Name:
ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY LETTERS
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 1; Journal Issue: 1; Journal ID: ISSN 2328-8930
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English

Citation Formats

Straub, AP, Yip, NY, and Elimelech, M. Raising the Bar: Increased Hydraulic Pressure Allows Unprecedented High Power Densities in Pressure-Retarded Osmosis. United States: N. p., 2014. Web. doi:10.1021/ez400117d.
Straub, AP, Yip, NY, & Elimelech, M. Raising the Bar: Increased Hydraulic Pressure Allows Unprecedented High Power Densities in Pressure-Retarded Osmosis. United States. doi:10.1021/ez400117d.
Straub, AP, Yip, NY, and Elimelech, M. Wed . "Raising the Bar: Increased Hydraulic Pressure Allows Unprecedented High Power Densities in Pressure-Retarded Osmosis". United States. doi:10.1021/ez400117d.
@article{osti_1211144,
title = {Raising the Bar: Increased Hydraulic Pressure Allows Unprecedented High Power Densities in Pressure-Retarded Osmosis},
author = {Straub, AP and Yip, NY and Elimelech, M},
abstractNote = {Pressure-retarded osmosis (PRO) has the potential to generate sustainable energy from salinity gradients. PRO is typically considered for operation with river water and seawater, but a far greater energy of mixing can be harnessed from hypersaline solutions. This study investigates the power density that can be obtained in PRO from such concentrated solutions. Thin-film composite membranes with an embedded woven mesh were supported by tricot fabric feed spacers in a specially designed crossflow cell to maximize the operating pressure of the system, reaching a stable applied hydraulic pressure of 48 bar (700 psi) for more than 10 h. Operation at this increased hydraulic pressure allowed unprecedented power densities, up to 60 W/m(2) with a 3 M (180 g/L) NaCl draw solution. Experimental power densities demonstrate reasonable agreement with power densities modeled using measured membrane properties, indicating high-pressure operation does not drastically alter membrane performance. Our findings exhibit the promise of the generation of power from high-pressure PRO with concentrated solutions.},
doi = {10.1021/ez400117d},
journal = {ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY LETTERS},
issn = {2328-8930},
number = 1,
volume = 1,
place = {United States},
year = {2014},
month = {1}
}