A Hybrid Optical Technology for Concentrate Management
- Achieve long-term operation of a pilot-scale membrane distillation system when operating with a real, complex concentrate solutions
- Maximize solar energy resource utilization and water recoverry for geographic and seasonal variations
- Mitigate membrane fouling and scaling of the high-salinity waters
This project will evaluate emerging desalination and solar heat/PV collector technologies in a transformative stand-alone, hybrid system to improve energy efficiency, while simultaneously: 1) minimizing the environmental impacts of brine disposal; and 2) increasing beneficial water recovery from impaired sources in water-scarce areas. This integrated, off-grid system represents a paradigm shift in how high-salinity concentrate streams in inland regions would be utilized by harnessing renewable energy resources.
The hybrid CSP/PV trough system, located at the Optical Science Center (OSC) solar test-bed at the University of Arizona (UA), was designed as a part of an ARPA-E FOCUS project and will undergo further characterization and modification as part of this project. The project team has access to the facilities in the Water and Energy Sustainable Technology (WEST) Center. The UA WEST Center is co-located with a full-scale modern water reclamation facility in Pima County, AZ, a unique proving ground for new water and energy technologies; houses second-generation membrane-based systems; and provides state-of-art analytics for water quality characterization.