Smart Composite Coatings and Membranes: Transport, Structural, Environmental and Energy Applications
Today, to address the water crisis, freshwater production through desalination and wastewater reclamation processes has received worldwide attention. Reverse osmosis (RO) has thus become the dominant technology in seawater desalination and water treatment markets, since the membranes are one of the process key factors. Similar membranes, but with special features, can be applied in energy generation based on the pressure retarded osmosis (PRO) process. In this chapter we present a brief description of the RO membranes, emphasizing the main types and synthesis procedure, not forgetting to highlight the weak and strong points. Depending on final applications, the characterization techniques most used and the parameters that influence the membrane performance such as water permeability, selectivity, or structure parameter are described and critically analyzed. The technologies related to desalination and PRO will also be addressed briefly. Finally, will discuss the new developments related to the membrane production processes and the new technologies needed to overcome the disadvantages of commercially available RO membranes for desalination and energy generation processes. © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Year of publication: 2015