Novel pre-treatment method for seawater reverse osmosis: Fibre media filtration

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Desalination, 2010, 250 (2), pp. 557 - 561
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A high rate fibre filter was used as a pre-treatment to seawater reverse osmosis (SWRO) to reduce membrane fouling. Seawater was drawn from Chowder Bay where the Sydney Institute of Marine Science, Australia is located. A lab-scale fibre filter with a height of 1000 mm and a diameter of 30 mm was used in conjunction with in-line coagulation. The effect of operating the fibre filter with different packing densities (105, 115 kg/m3) and filtration velocities (40, 60 m/h) was investigated in terms of silt density index (SDI10), modified fouling index (MFI), pressure drop (ΔP), turbidity and molecular weight distribution (MWD). The use of in-line coagulation improved the performance of fibre filter as measured by the MFI and SDI. Regardless of filtration velocity and packing density the MFI and SDI10 values remained low as did the turbidity until the end of the filtration run. The MWD analysis showed the removal efficiencies of organic materials like biopolymers, fulvic acids, low MW acids for even experiments with the highest filtration velocity (60 m/h) and lowest packing density (105 kg/m3). This pre-treatment has a small foot print as it has the capacity of operating at a very high filtration velocity. © 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
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