An integrated membrane process for the treatment of wastewaters from a flue gas desulfurization (FGD) plant was implemented on a laboratory scale to reduce their salt content and to produce a water stream to be recycled in the power industry. The process is based on a preliminary pretreatment of FGD wastewaters, which includes chemical softening and ultrafiltration (UF) to remove Ca2+ and Mg2+ ions as well as organic compounds. The pretreated wastewaters were submitted to a reverse osmosis (RO) step to separate salts from water. The RO retentate was finally submitted to a membrane distillation (MD) step to extract more water, thus increasing the total water recovery factor while producing a high-purity permeate stream. The performance of RO and MD membranes was evaluated by calculating salts rejection, permeate flux, fouling index, and water recovery. The investigated integrated system allowed a total recovery factor of about 94% to be reached, with a consequent reduction of the volume of FGD wastewater to be disposed, and an MD permeate stream with an electrical conductivity of 80 μS/cm, able to be reused in the power plant, with a saving in fresh water demand.

Treatment of Flue Gas Desulfurization Wastewater by an Integrated Membrane-Based Process for Approaching Zero Liquid Discharge

Conidi, Carmela;Macedonio, Francesca
;
Ali, Aamer;Criscuoli, Alessandra;Argurio, Pietro;Drioli, Enrico
2018

Abstract

An integrated membrane process for the treatment of wastewaters from a flue gas desulfurization (FGD) plant was implemented on a laboratory scale to reduce their salt content and to produce a water stream to be recycled in the power industry. The process is based on a preliminary pretreatment of FGD wastewaters, which includes chemical softening and ultrafiltration (UF) to remove Ca2+ and Mg2+ ions as well as organic compounds. The pretreated wastewaters were submitted to a reverse osmosis (RO) step to separate salts from water. The RO retentate was finally submitted to a membrane distillation (MD) step to extract more water, thus increasing the total water recovery factor while producing a high-purity permeate stream. The performance of RO and MD membranes was evaluated by calculating salts rejection, permeate flux, fouling index, and water recovery. The investigated integrated system allowed a total recovery factor of about 94% to be reached, with a consequent reduction of the volume of FGD wastewater to be disposed, and an MD permeate stream with an electrical conductivity of 80 μS/cm, able to be reused in the power plant, with a saving in fresh water demand.
FGD wastewater; integrated membrane-based process; zero liquid-discharge; sustainability
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11770/287833
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