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Title: Concentration polarization in spacer-filled reverse osmosis membrane systems
Keywords: concentration polarization; reverse osmosis; membrane; feed spacer; finite element method; numerical simulation
Issue Date: 28-Mar-2006
Citation: MA SHENGWEI (2006-03-28). Concentration polarization in spacer-filled reverse osmosis membrane systems. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: A 2-D fully coupled streamline upwind Petrov/Galerkin (SUPG) finite element numerical model was developed to simultaneously simulate hydrodynamic conditions and salt concentration profiles in spacer-filled RO membrane channels. With this numerical model, the role of feed spacer on concentration polarization and system performance was quantitatively investigated in realistic conditions. It was found that concentration polarization in spacer filled membrane channel was affected by two major mechanisms: concentration boundary layer disruption and concentration boundary layer disruption. The two mechanisms may work separately or jointly dependent on spacer configurations. It was also revealed that concentration polarization and the performance of membrane systems were strongly affected by the geometry of the spacer filaments, filament configurations and mesh length. The results demonstrated that the commonly used overall parameter of spacer (e.g. voidage) is inadequate or inappropriate to characterize spacers in a RO system. Furthermore, a universally optimized spacer design does not exist.
Appears in Collections:Ph.D Theses (Open)

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