Desalination and Water Reuse Symposium

Oral

398049 - Resource Recovery of Brackish Desalination Concentrate, Large-scale System Design and Performance Lessons Learned

Monday, June 4
10:30 AM - 12:00 PM
Location: Greenway EF
Co-Authors: Bill Norris, Austin Texas – Norris Leal

One of the major hurdles impacting the utilization of inland brackish water resources is concerns of how to effectively handle and manage concentrate from the desalination process. While traditional concentrate management approaches such as simple or enhanced evaporation, disposal into waste water treatment systems, and deep well injection, have been used effectively in many locations, these approaches are facing increased environmental, operational, and cost concerns. Therefore, innovative concentrate management options, such as resource recovery of the concentrate, are seeing increased research and attention.

While resource recovery of desalination concentrate has the potential to significantly reduce or possibly even eliminate concentrate disposal requirements, the technical and economic viability of this approach has been elusive. But in April 2017, one of the first large-scale concentrate resource recovery plants was was opened by Enviro Water Minerals (EWM) and Norris Leal at the 120 million liters per day (MLD) Kay Bailey Hutchinson Desalination Plant in El Paso, Texas. The concentrate recovery plant treats approximately 10 MLD of combined concentrate and brackish ground water, returning 9.5 MLD of potable water, and processing the residuals into high purity mineral products for use in industrial and manufacturing applications.

The paper and presentation will discuss the lessons learned from the design and operation of the pilot and full-scale plant, the products created and their markets, the general cost and performance benefits, and the applicability of concentrate recovery processes to other regions and brackish waters.

Mike Hightower

Research Professor
University of New Mexico

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398049 - Resource Recovery of Brackish Desalination Concentrate, Large-scale System Design and Performance Lessons Learned



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