NEWS for seawater desalination, designated SWC3+ and SWC4+. Hydranautics says that when operated at reduced flux rates, these 400ft2 (37-m2) membranes have a high productivity at a lower operating pressure, and offer energy savings of up to 5%. When operated under the equivalent flux rate as its standard SWC4 membrane, the company’s new high-surface membranes provide approximately 8% cost-savings, using fewer pressure vessels, less piping and a marginally lower operating pressure. At higher flux rates it claims that customers can achieve greater capital savings while producing a permeate of better quality. The SWC3+ is rated at 25 000 litres (6500 gallons) of water per day, while the SWC4+ provides 26 000 (7000 gallons) per day, both at 99.8% nominal salt rejection and 99.7% minimum salt rejection. The new membrane elements are available in 20-cm (8-inch) diameters and 101-cm (40-inch) long configurations. They can be used as either a stand-alone product, or part of what the company refers to as its Integrated Membrane Solution. Contact: Serenity Gardner, Hydranautics, 401 Jones Road, Oceanside, CA 92054, USA. Tel: +1 760 901 2529, Fax: +1 760 901 2578, Email: [email protected]
Dow launches membrane and end-cap products FilmTec Corp, a subsidiary of US-based Dow Chemical Co, has recently launched three new water-treatment products. The company introduced two new Filmtec membrane elements – the SW30HR LE-380 and the SW30HR-320 – at the International Desalination Association (IDA) World Congress Exhibition which was held on 28 September to 3 October 2003. The first element is designed to boost water production and improve permeate quality, reducing the cost of seawater desalination. The company claims that its use eliminates the trade-off between high rejection and low energy, resulting in a life-cycle cost reduc-
tion of up to 20%, compared with other membranes. Further advantages include high boron rejection, low fouling and a large active area. The second element, the SW30HR-320, is engineered to achieve high salt rejection and low second-stage fouling, and is easier to clean than competitive elements, says the company. The IDA World Congress Exhibition also provided Dow with the opportunity to introduce its FilmTec interlocking end-cap technology, which is designed to eliminate the weakest part of reverse osmosis (RO) membrane systems. The patented technology achieves a direct, leak-tight connection between adjacent permeate tubes, greatly enhancing the performance of RO systems, claims Dow. It eliminates problems associated with sliding couplers, an old method of connection that is still found in most RO systems in use today. In fact, says Dow, interlocking end-caps completely eliminate the need for sliding couplers, reducing the number of sealing surfaces for each connection to a single, axially compressed O-ring. Contact: Kristina Schnepf, The Dow Chemical Co, Liquid Separations, Customer Information Center, PO Box 1206, Midland, MI 48642-1206, USA. Tel: +1 989 636 9086, Fax: +1 989 832 1465, Email: [email protected]
Immersed membranes treat surface water In the USA, Mississippi’s state capital, the City of Jackson, is expanding its O.B. Curtis Water Treatment Plant using ZeeWeed membranes from Canadian company Zenon Environmental Inc. The contract is worth over US$15 million and will be the first facility in the state to use immersed membranes to treat surface water, says Zenon. According to Donald Bach, a senior civil engineer at the Department of Public Works in Jackson, the city’s source water contains high levels of manganese, which is difficult to treat using most technologies. This meant a more advanced
method of treatment was needed – specifically membrane technology. In addition to removing manganese, the membrane creates a physical barrier to pathogenic organisms. By using ZeeWeed technology the city will be in a better position to meet and exceed drinking water quality standards as they become more strict. Construction on the plant is expected to begin in early 2004 and it is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2005. Contact: Zenon Environmental Inc, 3239 Dundas Street West, Oakville, Ontario L6J 4Z3, Canada. Tel: +1 905 465 3030, Fax: +1 905 465 3050.
Applications for MemJet grow The LOTT Wastewater Alliance, in Washington State, USA, has selected USFilter’s MemJet immersed membrane bioreactor (MBR) system for its Hawks Prairie reclaimed water satellite treatment plant. Separately, USFilter reports that MemJet forms a key part of the wastewater treatment system that it is now offering. The Hawks Prairie plant will be the first of three planned reclaimed satellite facilities that are part of what LOTT refers to as its 20-year ‘Wastewater Resource Management Plan’. By meeting Washington State’s ‘Class A’ reclaimed water standards, the LOTT communities will save hundreds of millions of litres of drinking water each year. The use of ‘Class A’ water is more or less unrestricted. It is considered suitable for ‘public contact’, but not for human consumption. USFilter’s immersed microfiltration system will provide liquid– solids separation on a molecular scale, supplying high quality reuse water. The water from the Hawks Prairie facility will be piped to a series of constructed wetlands storage ponds. From the pipeline and the ponds, water will be drawn for irrigation and a variety of commercial or industrial processes. Water not distributed for direct use will circulate to the groundwater recharge infiltration basin. Named after the cities it serves – Lacey, Olympia, Tumwater, and
In Brief Cantel Medical’s sales and net income rise Cantel Medical Corp of Little Falls, New Jersey, USA, has reported a rise in sales and net income for fiscal year ended 31 July 2003. The provider of infection prevention and control products, water treatment systems, hollow-fibre membrane filtration and separation technologies for medical and non-medical applications, reported a net income of US$7.9 million, or US$0.80 per diluted share, on sales of US$129.3 million, compared with a net income of US$7.2 million, or US$0.74 per diluted share, on sales of US$120 million for the year ended 31 July 2002. Fuel cell operates at sub-zero temperatures In the USA, Honda Motor Co Ltd is using a newly developed membrane in what it claims is a remarkably compact fuel-cell stack that delivers higher performance with increased range and fuel efficiency, and is designed to operate at temperatures as low as –20°C. Cold-weather operation is one of the most significant technical barriers to the mass-market application of fuel-cell technology, says the company that is based in Torrance, California. The stack uses electrolyte membranes that greatly improve durability and allow power to be generated at temperatures ranging from –20°C to +95°C – a difficult achievement for stacks that employ conventional fluorine electrolyte membranes, claims the company. BioVest announces major sale of bioreactor systems US-based BioVest International Inc has recently completed the sale of 13 AcuSyst-Xcell bioreactor systems and four AcuSystMaximizer instruments to a major pharmaceutical company. The AcuSyst-XCELL system is a commercial-scale hollow-fibre cell culture system with production capacity approximately equivalent to a 1200-litre stirred tank. The Maximizer is a pilot-scale hollowfibre system. The purchaser plans to use the new systems to produce monoclonal antibodies.
3 Membrane Technology November 2003