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Title: Advanced, Energy-Efficient Hybrid Membrane System for Industrial Water Reuse

Abstract

In the U.S. manufacturing sector, current industrial water use practices are energy-intensive and utilize and discharge high volumes of waters, rendering them not sustainable especially in light of the growing scarcity of suitable water supplies. To help address this problem, the goal of this project was to develop an advanced, cost-effective, hybrid membrane-based water treatment system that can improve the energy efficiency of industrial wastewater treatment while allowing at least 50% water reuse efficiency. This hybrid process would combine emerging Forward Osmosis (FO) and Membrane Distillation (MD) technology components into an integrated FO-MD system that can beneficially utilize low-grade waste heat (i.e., T < 450 °F) in industrial facilities to produce distilled-quality product water for reuse. In this project, laboratory-, bench-, and pilot-scale experiments on the hybrid FO-MD system were conducted for industrial wastewater treatment. It was demonstrated at laboratory, bench, and pilot scales that FO-MD membrane technology can concentrate brine to very high total dissolved solids (TDS) levels (>200,000 ppm) that are at least 2.5 times higher than the TDS level to which RO can achieve. In laboratory testing, currently available FO and MD membranes were tested to select for high-performing membranes with high salt rejection and high watermore » flux. Multiple FO membrane/draw-salt solution combinations that gave high water flux with higher than 98% salt rejection were also identified. Reverse draw-salt fluxes were observed to be much lower for divalent salts than for monovalent salts. MD membranes were identified that had 99.9+% salt rejection and water flux as high as 50-90 L/(m 2·h) for flat-sheet membranes and >20 L/(m 2·h) for hollow fibers. In bench-scale testing, a single unit of commercially available FO and MD membrane modules were evaluated for continuous, integrated operation. Using the laboratory- and bench-scale test data, numerical modeling was performed on the FO and MD processes to estimate engineering parameters for a larger-scale pilot unit. Based on the experimental studies and modeling results, a pilot-scale, integrated FO-MD prototype unit was designed and built for trailer-mounted operation. This prototype system was fed real industrial wastewater, which could not be further treated by conventional technologies, from an oil production facility and was successfully operated for over 15 weeks without major stoppage. About 90% water recovery was possible, while concentrating the TDS from 12,000 ppm up to 190,500 ppm. The FO-MD prototype rejected most wastewater contaminants while producing water with <300 ppm TDS, even when the feed TDS was higher than 150,000 ppm. No chemical cleaning was necessary during the pilot testing period. Flushing the system with dechlorinated tap water was sufficient to reset the membranes for the next set of test conditions. Pilot performance and membrane autopsy showed that, even though the feed was concentrated more than 10 times, membrane fouling was unnoticeable and no defects were detected on the FO and MD membrane surfaces. This project demonstrated the technical feasibility of the hybrid FO-MD process by taking water already treated to the limit with the highest level of current technologies and further concentrating it 10-fold by using mostly low-cost materials. Because no membranes suitable for full-scale plant applications are available at present, economical feasibility of the hybrid technology is still uncertain, but it is expected that broader industry participation can further reduce FO-MD process costs.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [1];  [1];  [1]
  1. RTI International, Research Triangle Park, NC (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
RTI International, Research Triangle Park, NC (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), Advanced Manufacturing Office (EE-5A)
Contributing Org.:
Duke University; Veolia Water Technologies
OSTI Identifier:
1375009
Report Number(s):
DOE-RTI-0005758
DOE Contract Number:
EE0005758
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
32 ENERGY CONSERVATION, CONSUMPTION, AND UTILIZATION; Forward osmosis; Membrane distillation; Water treatment; Water reuse

Citation Formats

Toy, Lora, Choi, Young Chul, Hendren, Zachary, and Kim, Gyu Dong. Advanced, Energy-Efficient Hybrid Membrane System for Industrial Water Reuse. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.2172/1375009.
Toy, Lora, Choi, Young Chul, Hendren, Zachary, & Kim, Gyu Dong. Advanced, Energy-Efficient Hybrid Membrane System for Industrial Water Reuse. United States. doi:10.2172/1375009.
Toy, Lora, Choi, Young Chul, Hendren, Zachary, and Kim, Gyu Dong. Fri . "Advanced, Energy-Efficient Hybrid Membrane System for Industrial Water Reuse". United States. doi:10.2172/1375009. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1375009.
@article{osti_1375009,
title = {Advanced, Energy-Efficient Hybrid Membrane System for Industrial Water Reuse},
author = {Toy, Lora and Choi, Young Chul and Hendren, Zachary and Kim, Gyu Dong},
abstractNote = {In the U.S. manufacturing sector, current industrial water use practices are energy-intensive and utilize and discharge high volumes of waters, rendering them not sustainable especially in light of the growing scarcity of suitable water supplies. To help address this problem, the goal of this project was to develop an advanced, cost-effective, hybrid membrane-based water treatment system that can improve the energy efficiency of industrial wastewater treatment while allowing at least 50% water reuse efficiency. This hybrid process would combine emerging Forward Osmosis (FO) and Membrane Distillation (MD) technology components into an integrated FO-MD system that can beneficially utilize low-grade waste heat (i.e., T < 450 °F) in industrial facilities to produce distilled-quality product water for reuse. In this project, laboratory-, bench-, and pilot-scale experiments on the hybrid FO-MD system were conducted for industrial wastewater treatment. It was demonstrated at laboratory, bench, and pilot scales that FO-MD membrane technology can concentrate brine to very high total dissolved solids (TDS) levels (>200,000 ppm) that are at least 2.5 times higher than the TDS level to which RO can achieve. In laboratory testing, currently available FO and MD membranes were tested to select for high-performing membranes with high salt rejection and high water flux. Multiple FO membrane/draw-salt solution combinations that gave high water flux with higher than 98% salt rejection were also identified. Reverse draw-salt fluxes were observed to be much lower for divalent salts than for monovalent salts. MD membranes were identified that had 99.9+% salt rejection and water flux as high as 50-90 L/(m2·h) for flat-sheet membranes and >20 L/(m2·h) for hollow fibers. In bench-scale testing, a single unit of commercially available FO and MD membrane modules were evaluated for continuous, integrated operation. Using the laboratory- and bench-scale test data, numerical modeling was performed on the FO and MD processes to estimate engineering parameters for a larger-scale pilot unit. Based on the experimental studies and modeling results, a pilot-scale, integrated FO-MD prototype unit was designed and built for trailer-mounted operation. This prototype system was fed real industrial wastewater, which could not be further treated by conventional technologies, from an oil production facility and was successfully operated for over 15 weeks without major stoppage. About 90% water recovery was possible, while concentrating the TDS from 12,000 ppm up to 190,500 ppm. The FO-MD prototype rejected most wastewater contaminants while producing water with <300 ppm TDS, even when the feed TDS was higher than 150,000 ppm. No chemical cleaning was necessary during the pilot testing period. Flushing the system with dechlorinated tap water was sufficient to reset the membranes for the next set of test conditions. Pilot performance and membrane autopsy showed that, even though the feed was concentrated more than 10 times, membrane fouling was unnoticeable and no defects were detected on the FO and MD membrane surfaces. This project demonstrated the technical feasibility of the hybrid FO-MD process by taking water already treated to the limit with the highest level of current technologies and further concentrating it 10-fold by using mostly low-cost materials. Because no membranes suitable for full-scale plant applications are available at present, economical feasibility of the hybrid technology is still uncertain, but it is expected that broader industry participation can further reduce FO-MD process costs.},
doi = {10.2172/1375009},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Fri Mar 31 00:00:00 EDT 2017},
month = {Fri Mar 31 00:00:00 EDT 2017}
}

Technical Report:

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