The Optimal Membrane Type for the Next Membrane Replacement of Tajoura SWRO Desalination Plant
Ezzeghni, Usama Ahmed
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Desalination of seawater in Libya has the capability to increase the accessible resources for producing drinkable water. Desalination of seawater with reverse osmosis membrane technology is one of the most significant techniques in the field of seawater desalination, for the latter technique the membrane manufacturers had created a new advanced membranes that deliver a high output fresh water and high salt refusal that cause a decline in operating cost through lower energy consumption compared to the other thermal desalination technologies. This paper aims to compare between several membrane products developed by different companies to improve the productivity of Tajoura Seawater Reverse Osmosis (SWRO) Desalination plant with high quality fresh water. The membrane type SW30HRLE-440i was selected for the next membrane replacement, which increases the plant productivity from 12,000 to 14,300 m3/d with decreasing the number of membrane elements from 1080 to 900 membrane elements. In addition, the suggested membrane provides a high rejection, which results in an improved water quality with a salinity of less than 100 ppm where it was almost 200 ppm, as well as it allows the plant to be designed and operated at a lower operating cost through a reduced specific energy consumption, which was 8.492 to 5.48 kWh/m3 and can be less than 2 kWh/m3 if a modern energy recovery device (ERD) is used with a significant modification to the plant.