High-pressure operation of spiral wound membrane elements: The relevant aspect of permeate channel fluid dynamics

C. Kleffner*, G. Braun, Technical University Cologne; S. Antonyuk, Technische Universit├Ąt Kaiserslautern, Germany

As the industry is increasingly forced to enhance concepts concerning water reuse and the recovery of valuable substances to strive for a waste water-free production, viable methods for the treatment of high osmotic solutions are required. In terms of the sustainable approach of a minimal liquid discharge, membrane based processing turns out to be a suitable option.

Reverse osmosis (RO) is a broadly developed and well-established technology for the treatment of brines. As long as the osmotic pressure of the treated salt solution allows a feasible operation, reverse osmosis remains the preferred choice due to its persuasive energy efficiency. Extending the application of the pressure-driven reverse osmosis process towards higher operating pressures is a reasonable approach as the achievable concentration factor defines the size and the costs of the subsequent thermal concentration step. As a reasonable consequence, the implementation of a high-pressure RO (HPRO) operation by appropriate membrane elements is desirable.

RO spiral wound elements (SWE) are usually able to withstand a maximum feed pressure up to 83 bar. To replace the energetically unfavourable thermal desalination processes sufficiently a HPRO element should be operational up to at least 120 bar. However, exceptional feed pressures lead to increased mechanical stresses on the components of the spiral wound element. To optimize the design parameters and establish constructive requirements, performance-limiting factors have to be redefined and evaluated. Taking this approach, the flux reduction as a result of membrane deformation and the influence of permeate-sided pressure drop induced by membrane-spacer interactions are examined in this study...

Session: M1 - Membrane Design and Characterization
Day: 22 October 2019
Time: 13:00 - 14:15 h

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