Integrated Nanofiltration and Reverse Osmosis for Desalination

Talaeipour M, Nouri J, Hassani AH, Mahvi AH, An investigation of desalination by nanofiltration, reverse osmosis and integrated (hybrid NF/RO) membranes employed in brackish water treatment. Journal of environmental health science 2017 Jul 21;15:18. doi: 10.1186/s40201-017-0279-x.

BACKGROUND: As an appropriate tool, membrane process is used for desalination of brackish water, in the production of drinking water. The present study aims to investigate desalination processes of brackish water of Qom Province in Iran.

METHODS: This study was carried out at the central laboratory of Water and Wastewater Company of the studied area. To this aim, membrane processes, including nanofiltration (NF) and reverse osmosis (RO), separately and also their hybrid process were applied. Moreover, water physical and chemical parameters, including salinity, total dissolved solids (TDS), electric conductivity (EC), Na+1 and Cl-1 were also measured. Afterward, the rejection percent of each parameter was investigated and compared using nanofiltration and reverse osmosis separately and also by their hybrid process. The treatment process was performed by Luna domestic desalination device, which its membrane was replaced by two NF90 and TW30 membranes for nanofiltration and reverse osmosis processes, respectively. All collected brackish water samples were fed through membranes NF90-2540, TW30-1821-100(RO) and Hybrid (NF/RO) which were installed on desalination household scale pilot (Luna water 100GPD). Then, to study the effects of pressure on permeable quality of membranes, the simulation software model ROSA was applied.

RESULTS: Results showed that percent of the salinity rejection was recorded as 50.21%; 72.82 and 78.56% in NF, RO and hybrid processes, respectively. During the study, in order to simulate the performance of nanofiltartion, reverse osmosis and hybrid by pressure drive, reverse osmosis system analysis (ROSA) model was applied. The experiments were conducted at performance three methods of desalination to remove physic-chemical parameters as percentage of rejections in the pilot plant are: in the NF system the salinity 50.21, TDS 43.41, EC 43.62, Cl 21.1, Na 36.15, and in the RO membrane the salinity 72.02, TDS 60.26, EC 60.33, Cl 43.08, Na 54.41. Also in case of the rejection in hybrid system of those parameters and ions included salinity 78.65, TDS 76.52, EC 76.42, Cl 63.95, and Na 70.91.

CONCLUSIONS: Comparing rejection percent in three above-mentioned methods, it could be concluded that, in reverse osmosis process, ions and non-ion parameters rejection ability were rather better than nanofiltration process, and also better in hybrid compared to reverse osmosis process. The results reported in this paper indicate that the integration of membrane nanofiltration with reverse osmosis (hybrid NF/RO) can be completed by each other probably to remove salinity, TDS, EC, Cl, and Na.

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