As the nation’s population continues to grow, the associated use of chemical products and waste generation rises accordingly. As a result, an increasing variety of contaminants are regularly released into the nation’s water sources, eventually making their way into the drinking water supply.
‘Tapping’ into the residential water treatment market
Most reverse osmosis systems waste as much as 20 gallons just to produce one gallon of product water. The new technology called "ZeroWaste" eliminates this problem by returning the concentrate water from the reverse osmosis system back to the home's plumbing, resulting in 100 percent efficiency.
A study published as part of the EPA's Environmental Technology Verification (ETV) Program verifies the performance of a Fyne Process membrane filtration plant tested on high organic-laden surface water in Barrow, Ark. The plant was able to remove significant levels of organics--precursors to disinfection byproducts such as trihalomethanes (THM) and haloacetic acids (HAA)--producing water that easily met the disinfection byproduct standards set by the EPA's stringent Stage 1 D/DBP Rule.
On average there are 50 to 75 significant desalination projects per year in the United States with an average capacity of approximately 1 million gallons per day. The majority of these projects utilize membrane processes such as nanofiltration (NF) or reverse osmosis (RO).
At the Procter & Gamble manufacturing plant in Greensboro, N.C., an Aquionics ultraviolet (UV) dechlorination unit was installed before two banks of reverse osmosis (RO) membranes. Trials that ran soon after the UV system’s installation showed a dramatic reduction in the RO membrane wash frequency—down from an average of eight cleanings per month to only two per month.
Reverse Osmosis Membranes Maintenance Costs Reduced
Membrane technology offers the possibility of managing total water resources. The spiral wound membrane element configuration is the most widely used due to its high packing density and relatively low price. This article will describe some technological advances in the area of innovative new membranes and application concepts for spiral wound membrane elements.
Part one of this article appeared in the February issue and described how nanofiltration, reverse osmosis and electrodialysis reversal are being run side-by-side at the Brackish Water Demonstration Facility in California.
In Port Hueneme, California, a state-of-the-art desalination facility uses three brackish water desalination technologies: reverse osmosis (RO), nanofiltration (NF) and electrodialysis reversal (EDR), operated side-by-side to produce over three million gallons per day (mgd) of high quality drinking water. The Brackish Water Reclamation Demonstration Facility (BWRDF) is the cornerstone of the Port Hueneme Water Agency’s (PHWA) Water Quality Improvement Program. In addition to providing desalted water for local use, the BWRDF also serves as a full-scale research and demonstration facility.
Innovations in membrane technology, which has been used in major industries and hospitals, are driving the industry into the home.
The membrane processing technologies of microfiltration (MF), ultrafiltration (UF), nanofiltration (NF) and reverse osmosis (RO) are widely used to separate suspended and dissolved materials from water solutions in numerous industrial, medical and drinking water applications.