Calcium phosphate scaling during wastewater desalination on oligoamide surfaces mimicking reverse osmosis and nanofiltration membranes

Karthik Rathinam, Yoram Oren, Winfried Petry, Dietmar Schwahn, Roni Kasher

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations

Abstract

Desalinated domestic wastewater is an indispensable water resource in arid regions; however, its recovery can be limited by calcium phosphate scaling and fouling of the membrane. Here we investigated calcium phosphate mineralization on oligoamide surfaces that mimics reverse osmosis (RO) and nanofiltration (NF) membrane surfaces. We used a solution that simulates desalination of secondary treated domestic wastewater effluents for calcium phosphate mineralization experiments with oligoamide-coated gold surfaces. Attenuated total reflection–Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy and energy dispersive spectrometry showed that calcium phosphate and carbonate precipitated on RO mimetic surfaces. The rate of precipitation on oligoamide sensors was monitored by a quartz crystal microbalance, showing that scaling was more intense on the RO than the NF mimetic surface and that excessive carboxyl functional groups on both surfaces promoted scaling. Filtration experiments of similar solutions with commercial membranes showed that scaling was more intense on the RO membranes than on the NF membranes, which supported the results obtained with the oligoamide model surfaces. The results of this study can be implemented in developing RO and NF membranes to prevent calcium phosphate scaling and consequently lower water-treatment costs of domestic wastewater treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)217-225
Number of pages9
JournalWater Research
Volume128
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2018

Keywords

  • Domestic wastewater desalination
  • Oligoamide
  • Quartz crystal microbalance
  • Reverse osmosis
  • SSE solution
  • Scaling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecological Modeling
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution

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