Sustainable improvement of drinking water quality by nanofiltration powered by renewable energy

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Desalination membrane technology is increasingly used for water production. However, the main disadvantage of desalination is related to energy consumption and CO2 emissions, so desalination powered by renewable energy (RE) is getting interest. In this study nanofiltration (NF) membranes have been used for drinking water quality improvement in a pilot plant (50 m3/day) powered by RE (11.0 kW). The aims of this paper are: (1) to study the viability of a hybrid RE system to improve drinking water quality, (2) to study the availability of RE for NF desalination, and (3) to improve the chemical and organoleptic quality of tap water and tap water blended with nanofiltered water. Results confirm that desalination powered by RE is an interesting option for water quality improvement. Thanks to the hybrid system of the pilot plant, operation is around 93% of time. After several blind tastings, 82% of the tasters preferred water blended with nanofiltered water rather than current tap water.

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