Hybrid desalination processes for beneficial use of reverse osmosis brine: Current status and future prospects

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Desalination, 2019, pp. 104 - 111
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© 2018 Elsevier B.V. As water shortage has increasingly become a serious global problem, desalination using seawater reverse osmosis (SWRO) is considered as a sustainable source of potable water sources. However, a major issue on the SWRO desalination plant is the generation of brine that has potential adverse impact due to its high salt concentration. Accordingly, it is necessary to develop technologies that allow environmentally friendly and economically viable management of SWRO brines. This paper gives an overview of recent research works and technologies to treat SWRO brines for its beneficial use. The treatment processes have been classified into two different groups according to their final purpose: 1) technologies for producing fresh water and 2) technologies for recovering energy. Topics in this paper includes membrane distillation (MD), forward osmosis (FO), pressure-retarded osmosis (PRO), reverse electrodialysis (RED) as emerging tools for beneficial use of SWRO brine. In addition, a new approach to simultaneously recover water and energy from SWRO brine is introduced as a case study to provide insight into improving the sustainability of seawater desalination.
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