MORE | Spring 2019

Pore Wetting in Membrane Distillation

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Membrane distillation (MD) provides a way to extract water from reverse osmosis (RO) brine with high water recovery and is a potential solution for brine management. However, pore wetting of membranes is a major hurdle that prevents its reliable implementation. The objective of the study is to identify a pre-treatment that can prevent wetting in MD treatment of wastewater RO brine. Three pre-treatments with different separation mechanisms were compared: foam fractionation, advanced oxidation, and ultrafiltration. Based on changes in salt rejection, promising results with respect to reduction of pore wetting in MD were found for foam fractionation pre-treatment.

Student researcher

Kimya Rajwade

Civil, environmental and sustainable engineering

Hometown: Tempe, AZ, United States

Graduation date: Spring 2019