Integration of Accelerated Precipitation Softening-Microfiltration (APS-MF) Assembly to Maximize Water Recovery from the Treatment of Brackish Water

Meyers, Kyle
The development of hydrocarbon resources such as crude oil, coalbed methane, conventional gas, and tight-shale gas unvaryingly results in the generation of brackish wastewaters. Brackish wastewater is characterized by salt content, often expressed as total dissolved solids (TDS). In the United States alone, over 21 billion barrels of produced water are generated every year. The disposal of this produced water has major economic and environmental implications. Current reverse osmosis (RO) treatment methods yield clean water recovery rates ranging from 50-75%. The recovery is largely limited by the presence of mineral scalants. The objective of this project is to integrate an Accelerated Precipitate Softening (APS)-Microfiltration (MF) device prior to a secondary RO treatment in order to increase water recovery to ratios approaching or exceeding 90%. APS is used to remove scale-forming ions from the RO concentrate in the form of precipitate, and MF serves as a polishing step following the precipitation softening to remove any solids. The integrated APS-MF device for RO concentrate treatment will vastly enhance the feed water quality to the secondary RO system, which allows for the substantial increase in water recovery.
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