Bureau of Reclamation selects 16 projects to receive $3.5 million for desalination and water purification research

24-08-2018
Bureau of Reclamation,US$3.5 million,desalination,water purification research,Washington,Research programme,DWPR

WASHINGTON – Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Brenda Burman announced that 16 entities will receive $3.5 million for laboratory and pilot-scale research projects as part of the Desalination and Water Purification Research Programme. The DWPR Programme works with Reclamation researchers and partners to develop more innovative, cost-effective and technologically efficient ways to desalinate water.

“Desalination is an increasingly important source of water for Western communities" Commissioner Burman said. "Investing in innovative technologies to make desalination more affordable and energy-efficient will help many communities across the United States.”

Nine laboratory projects and seven pilot-scale projects were selected for funding. A laboratory-scale study is typically a bench scale study involving small flow rates. They are used to determine the viability of a novel process, new materials, or process modifications. Research at this stage often involves a high degree of risk and uncertainty.

A pilot-scale project tests a novel process at a sufficiently large scale to determine the technical, practical, and economic viability of the process and are generally preceded by laboratory studies that demonstrate if that the technology works. The $3.5 million will be matched with $4.8 million in non-federal funding.

The nine laboratory projects are:

Argonne National Laboratory – Compressible foam supercapacitor electrodes for energy-efficient and low-cost desalination. $150,000

Colorado State University – Developing relationships between mineral scaling and membrane surface chemistry to improve water recovery of inland brackish water desalination. $133,634

Fraunhofer USA, Inc – Plasma activated biochar for high-efficiency capacitive desalination. $72,173

New Mexico State University – Portable wind turbines for potable water through electrodialysis treatment. $150,000

Trussel Technologies, Inc. – Novel online surrogates to monitor reverse osmosis performance in reuse applications. $150,000

University of Arizona – Near zero-liquid discharge water reuse with a closed-circuit ozone-membrane distillation process. $146,361

University of California, Davis – Flow cytometric monitoring of waterborne pathogens to facilitate water treatment and direct potable water reuse. $149,178

University of Notre Dame – High performance biocatalytic membranes with cell surface display enzymes for improved concentrate management. $149,995

Vanderbilt University – Polyelectrolyte/Micelle multiplayer nanofiltration membranes with drastically enhanced performance. $150,000

The seven pilot-scale projects are:

Carollo Engineers, Inc – Pilot testing a two-stage, fixed bed biotreatment system for selenium removal. $279,246

Gradiant Osmotics, LLC – Counter flow RO - Innovative desalination technology for cost-effective concentrate management and reduced energy use. $400,000

Massachusetts Institute of Technology – Pilot testing dynamic optimised, photovoltaic-powered, time-variant electrodialysis reversal desalination system. $400,000

New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology – Geothermal membrane distillation for large-scale use. $200,000

New Mexico State University – Assessment and implementation framework for transboundary brackish groundwater desalination in south-central New Mexico. $399,353

The City of Daytona Beach – Tracking the occurrence and removal of microbial and toxic hazards during potable reuse through online monitoring and advanced analytics. $400,000

University of California, Riverside – Innovative water reuse systems harnessing chloramine photochemistry for potable water reuse. $200,000

The DWPR programme is supporting the Department of the Interior's priorities, including: creating a conservation stewardship legacy second only to Teddy Roosevelt, utilising our natural resources, and restoring trust with local communities, among others.