Today, membranes are implemented in a range of industrial wastewater treatment solutions. Reverse Osmosis is mainly used where re-use of the waste water is the goal or where special contaminants make it necessary before discharge. A general benefit of using Aquaporin Inside® Forward Osmosis membranes is that the process can handle high-fouling streams and produce very high quality water, usable e.g. for boiler feed water, in a single treatment step.
Produced water in the oil and gas industry
The large volumes of produced water with very high TDS and organics loading are an ongoing concern in the upstream oil and gas industry. Aquaporin Inside® Forward Osmosis membranes can be used to treat produced water with minimal pretreatment to a quality ready for discharge or re-use. Further, Aquaporin Inside® Reverse Osmosis membranes have higher water flux which means that the footprint of the water treatment systems can be decreased.
Whey wastewater in the dairy industry often contains high levels of urea. This is on one hand a loss of valuable biological nitrogen and on the other it can lead to issues with discharge regulations. One application of Aquaporin Inside® Forward Osmosis membranes is to recover urea from dairy wastewater.
Further, RO processes are commonly used to further separate whey streams. Here, Aquaporin Inside® membranes can provide a higher product flow through the right balance of high water flux and anti-fouling characteristics.
The pharmaceutical industry is under pressure from wastewater discharge regulations. At the same time, especially biological production produces high fouling wastewaters from fermentation processes. Aquaporin Inside® Forward Osmosis membranes can treat these waters to re-use or discharge quality in a single FO process. The high rejection membranes can also remove APIs (Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients) which cannot be removed by other membrane processes.
Agricultural irrigation represents the majority of water use in the world. Aquaporin Inside® Forward Osmosis membranes can help re-use impaired water directly and cost-efficiently within agriculture. In a Fertilizer Driven Forward Osmosis process, the concentrated fertilizer is used to draw out water from an impaired stream. The water transfer is driven by osmotic pressure, leading to low OPEX and CAPEX requirements.