Assessing the linkage between the feed water quality and the Reverse-Osmosis membranes performance during desalination

Amos Bick, Gideon Oron

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


The scarcity of fresh water in most of the countries in the Mediterranean Basin makes desalinated seawater a valuable alternative water source. It is therefore imperative to develop and adapt Reverse-Osmosis (RO) methods allowing minimizing the production expenses. Management modeling allows identifying preferable directions of implementation. Commonly desalination depends on a combination of a series of controlling parameters. These include the feed water quality, required qualities, and operational conditions determined by the membrane characteristics, flux and operating pressure head. Frequently it is elaborating to select the best membrane for the RO process due to the complexity of the processes and the abundance information that is provided by the membrane manufacturers. Taking available data (from RO membrane manufacturer catalogues) enables to define clusters of parameters with similar properties for improved control of the desalination process. According to the analysis it was realized that there is a similarity parameterization between the Silt Density Index (SDI) and the membrane flow rate. Other clusters were found as well. This analysis can be further developed into larger clusters leading to distinguishing of two major facets: (i) the permeate facet, and; (ii) the RO membrane rejection facet, where each of them includes several parameters. It turned out that corresponding managing tools allow to simply the membrane selection process and ultimately diminish the production expenses.
Original languageEnglish
StatePublished - 11 Sep 2020
EventDesalination Strategies in South Mediterranean Countries - Jerba, Tunisia
Duration: 1 Sep 20204 Sep 2020


ConferenceDesalination Strategies in South Mediterranean Countries


  • Clusters
  • Desalination
  • Management modeling
  • Membrane performance
  • Reverse Osmosis
  • Silt Density Index
  • Operational parametrs


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