Licentiate seminar

Continuous Electropermutation Using Ion-Exchange Textile

Defendant Main Advisor Extra Advisor Date
Carl-Ola Danielsson Anders Dahlkild Anna Velin 2004-11-19

Christoffer Sylwan, Kemiteknik, KTH

Evaluation committee


Increased levels of nitrate in ground water has made many wells unsuitable as sources for drinking water. In this thesis an ion-exchange assisted electromembrane process, suitable for nitrate removal, is investigated both theoretically and experimentally. A new ion-exchange textile material is introduced as a conducting spacer in the feed compartment of an continuous electropermutation cell. The ion-exchange textile have a high permeability and provides faster ion-exchange kinetics compared to ion-exchange resins. The sheet shaped structure of the textile makes it easy to incorporate into the cell. A report on the development of a new electro-membrane module, capable of incorporating an ion-exchange textile spacer, is presented. A theoretical study of the flow field through the electro-membrane module was performed using two different 2-D models. The calculated flow distributions provided by different proposed module designs were compared and a prototype module was produced. The flow field obtained with the prototype cell was visualised in a experimental cell with a transparent plexiglass cover. A steady-state model based on the conservation of the ionic species is developed. The governing equations on the microscopic level are presented and volume averaged to give macro-homogeneous equations. The model equations are analysed and relevant simplifications are motivated and introduced. The dimensionless parameters governing the continuous electropermutation process are identified and their influence on the process are discussed. The mathematical model can be used as a tool when optimising the process parameters and designing equipment. An experimental study that aimed to show the positive influence of using the ion-exchange textile in the feed compartment of an continuous electropermutation process is presented. The incorporation of the ion-exchange textile significantly improves the nitrate removal rate at the same time as the power consumption is decreased. A superficial solution of sodium nitrate with a initial nitrate concentration of 105 ppm was treated. A product stream with less than 20 ppm nitrate could be obtained, in a single pass mode of operation. Its concluded from these experiments that continuous electropermutation using ion-exchange textile provides an interesting alternative for nitrate removal, in drinking water production. The predictions of the mathematical model are compared with experimental results and a good agreement is obtained.
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