Click the link to read the release on the Reclamation website (Chelsea Kennedy):
The Bureau of Reclamation awarded funding for 15 projects under the Desalination and Water Purification Research program. The research projects are innovative solutions that seek to reduce water treatment costs and improve performance.
“Developing new technologies that can treat currently unusable water will help communities worldwide,” said Research and Development Program Manager Ken Nowak. “These technologies have the potential to increase water supply flexibility under the risks of climate change and drought.”
The Desalination and Water Purification Research Program provides financial assistance for advanced water treatment research and development, leading to improved technologies for developing water supply from non-traditional waters, including seawater, brackish groundwater, and municipal wastewater, among others.
In addition to the $4 million in federal funding provided for selected projects, recipients have committed an additional $3 million of non-federal cost share to further support these research efforts.
- University of Alabama ($249,966 federal funding, $499,932 total project cost) : Engineering Sustainable Solvents for Brine Desalination. This project seeks to improve solvent performance in temperature swing solvent extraction for brine desalination through experimental and computational techniques.
- Pacifica Water Solutions, LLC ($350,000 federal funding, $700,000 total project cost): Field Pilot Testing Electrically Conducting Nanofiltration and Reverse Osmosis Membranes. This project will field test innovative anti-scaling and antifouling electrically conducting desalination membranes against commercial membranes for reverse osmosis concentrate minimization and produced water applications.
- University of California, Riverside ($250,000 federal funding, $390,754 total project cost): Development of a Novel Vacuum-ultraviolet Photochemical System for Treatment of Nitrate and Per Fluorinated Substances from Inland Desalination Brine. This project will test a novel laboratory-scale vacuum ultraviolet light-driven photochemical process for treatment of nitrate and perfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) from inland desalination brine.
- University of Colorado ($592,703 federal funding, $756,246 total project cost): Concentrate Minimization: Pilot Testing of Improved Static Mixer Crystallizers. This project will perform pilot scale testing and evaluation of improved in-line, static mixer elements to accelerate the desupersaturation of reverse osmosis desalination brine.
- University of Colorado ($250,000 federal funding, $396,501 total project cost): Robust Surface Patterned Membranes for Membrane Distillation of High Salinity Brine with High Efficiency. This project aims to develop and test scalable, robust, surface-patterned microporous membranes that are designed for a membrane distillation process treating highly concentrated brines.
- Mickley & Associates LLC ($111,500 federal funding, $234,150 total project cost): Brine Mining. The project will gather, analyze, and synthesize information from the literature, websites, and interviews to bring clarity to many issues involving brine mining, such as potential benefits, feasibility, applicable technologies, recoverable compounds, and more.
- Purdue University ($250,000 federal funding, $465,799 total project cost): Batch Counterflow Reverse Osmosis. This project will develop lab-scale demonstration of batch counterflow reverse osmosis to achieve high recovery and efficiency and develop a fundamental understanding of fouling kinetics for the process.
- Tufts University ($249,994 federal funding, $407,733 total project cost): New Fouling-Resistant, Anti-Microbial Membranes for Pretreatment. This project aims to develop and demonstrate ultrafiltration pretreatment membranes that resist organic fouling and biofouling through dual mechanisms, manufactured through a novel scalable manufacturing process.
- University of Minnesota ($249,853 federal funding, $249,853 total project cost): Crystallization Kinetics: Toward the Useful Separation of Salts in Enhanced Evaporation Systems. This project seeks to leverage the research team’s detailed understanding of the spatial and temporal temperature variation and brine evaporation behavior in enhanced evaporation systems to intentionally, and selectively, precipitate salt in distinct locations for collection and reuse.
- New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology ($249,896 federal funding, $499,792 total project cost): Advanced Hybrid Membrane Process for Simultaneous Recovery of Clean Water and Lithium from High Salinity Brines. This project seeks to develop an innovative hybrid membrane process for simultaneous recovery of clean water and lithium from high-salinity brines.
- Temple University ($250,000 federal funding, $500,972 total project cost): Synergistic Integration of Electroactive Forward Osmosis and Microbial Desalination Cells for Energy-Neutral Desalination. The goal of this project is to develop an energy-neutral seawater desalination system by integrating electroactive forward osmosis and microbial desalination cells.
- Vanderbilt University ($250,000 federal funding, $518,463 total project cost): Selective Removal and Degradation of PFAS via Cyclic Adsorption-electrooxidation on Conductive Functionalized Cu-MOF-aminated-GO. This project aims to develop a fundamentally new approach to selectively remove PFAS from water using a metal organic framework and degrade it to ensure complete removal.
- William Marsh Rice University ($250,000 federal funding, $332,842 total project cost): Ion Exchange Membranes with Tunable Monovalent Ion Permselectivity to Maximize Water Recovery in Desalination. This project seeks to improve the performance of electrodialysis technologies by developing ion exchange membranes with tunable ion permeability and permselectivity for desalination applications.
- Freese and Nichols, Inc. ($231,710 federal funding, $539,945 total project cost): Strategies for Gaining Pathogen Removal Credit for Reverse Osmosis in Potable Reuse in Texas (and Beyond). This project will facilitate the identification and evaluation of strategies for gaining pathogen removal credit for reverse osmosis in potable reuse applications in Texas and beyond.
- George Mason University ($250,000 federal funding, $500,203 total project cost): Engineering Spatial Wood Carbon Scaffolds with Nanocellulose Fillers for Water Deionization. This project seeks to create an innovative and energy-efficient capacitive deionization process with the help of biomass-based advanced porous structures for water desalination and purification.
For more information on Reclamation’s Desalination and Water Purification Research Program visit www.usbr.gov/research/dwpr.