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Home Environmental Electromembrane technology and modular water desalination device

Electromembrane technology and modular water desalination device


Water Desalination Device is based on a combination of sorption and membrane technologies or ion exchange assisted electrodialysis. All the components of the device are produced from inorganic materials, durable and stable to toxication and fouling.

Employment of ceramic-based membranes is getting more and more attention due to reduced cost, high recoveries, stability, and easy maintenance. The proposed macro-porous alumina membranes with sorption active coatings provide cheap water desalination and meet national drinking water standards. The composite membrane consists of a porous Al2O3 – ZrO2 – Y2O3 based support and a zirconium dioxide or hydrated phosphate top layer about 3 to 1 μm thick.

Due to the layer’ sorption ability, bivalent metal ions can be efficiently removed from water, resulting in cancellation of an ion-exchange stage in the water conditioning process. In the course of the investigation, additional amorphous carbon or carbide layers will be applied inside the support to improve performance characteristics of the membranes.

Sleep-casting technology, sol-gel multistep processes, and gas-phase deposition were used for membrane formation.

Innovative Aspect and Main Advantages

The efficiency of water purification /desalination process is provided by several factors including:

  • ion exchange column is divided into chambers of desalination and brine chambers
  • intermembrane filling comprises of ion exchanger with advanced uptake and mass transfer properties
  • ceramic membranes are modified with sol of zirconia
  • new composite oxide sorbents

The positive results on water desalination using combined ion exchange assisted electrodialysis with novel oxide materials are obtained. Desalination ratio data was obtained for water with varied mineral salts content.

The inorganic materials based on oxides of multivalent elements, namely Al, Mn, Ti, Zr and Si are selected for processing of weak electrolyte solutions, namely hydrated oxides of Zr, Mn and Ti are proposed, which are optimal in combination of cation and anion-exchange functions.

New composite oxide sorbents are designed. Pilot stacks of sorbents are synthesized and studied on sustainability. The better among them are:

  • Al2O3·x MnO2·xnH2O (3:1)
  • SnO2·xAl2O3·xnH2O (1:1)
  • TiO2·xMnO2·xnH2O (3:1)

Areas of Application

Production of portable water from brackish water (1-3 g/l) for small to medium size private, agricultural, or municipal water consumers.

Electromembrane installation
Fig. 1 Electromembrane installation

Water desalination scheme
Fig. 2 Water desalination scheme

Pilot plant assembly
Fig. 3 Pilot plant assembly

Stage of Development

Ukrainian patents are in process.
Pilot prototypes are available.

Contact Details

Contact person: Byelyakov Volodymyr, Dr.Sci
Institute of General & Inorganic Chemistry of the Ukrainian National Academy of Science
Address: 30-32 Paladin Prosp, Kiev, Ukraine
Tel/Fax: (380-44) 424 0462 / 424 3070
E-mail: : This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

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