Performance evaluation of ePTFE and PVDF flat-sheet module direct contact membrane distillation

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This paper reports experiments using a flat-sheet module with 0.18 ∼ 0.45 μm ePTFE (expanded polytetrafluoroethylene) and PVDF (polyvinylidene fluoride) membranes to show the effects of membrane properties, salt concentration and fluid hydrodynamics on the permeate flux and salt rejection of DCMD (direct contact membrane distillation). A theoretical prediction of the permeate flux was carried out, and was in close agreement with the experimental results. In addition, the energy integration of the process was also analyzed in order to evaluate module design to increase energy efficiency. According to the simulated results of the energy integration design, a combination of simultaneous cooling of the permeate stream and an additional heat exchanger to lower the temperature of the permeate stream not only enhances the MD flux, but also reduces energy consumption.

Keywords: DCMD, desalination, energy integration design, ePTFE, membrane distillation, PVDF

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