The IMDEA Water membrane research group is focused on studying the whole membrane process life cycle: from membrane preparation, to their use in water treatment until their recycling. The group is developing new generation antifouling membranes by surface modification and the addition of functionalized groups and nanoparticles. Further, water treatment by different types of membranes such as reverse osmosis (RO), nanofiltration (NF), ultrafiltration (UF) and microfiltration (MF) is carried and their process performance is evaluated. After recycling the membranes (project LIFE-TRANSFOMEM), the group studies the modification of recycled membranes in order to find new applications in wastewater treatments. As an example, there is an active collaboration with the REMTAVARES 3 project, where the membrane technology group is focused on the modification of recycled membranes for the removal of emerging compounds from hospital wastewater. The group is also developing research on the characterization, fouling (membrane autopsy) and effectiveness of different cleaning treatments of commercial membranes.
7FP Marie Curie-Cofund
Transformation of disposed reverse osmosis membranes into recycled ultra-and nanofiltration membranes (LIFE TRANSFOMEM)
LIFE TRANSFOMEM, project coordinated by IMDEA WATER, aims to test an innovative and environmentally-friendly recycling process for waste reverse-osmosis desalination membranes, currently landfilled, in order to produce lower pressure ultra-nanofiltration membranes LIFE TRANSFOMEM is framed in the "LIFE+ Environment Policy & Governance" component: pilot projects that contribute to the development of innovative policy ideas, technologies, methods and instruments. TRANSFOMEM is a European Community co-funding LIFE project with contract number LIFE13 ENV/ES/000751.
Innovation and recycling of membranes for water treatment (INREMEM)
The main objective of the coordinated project INREMEM is to recycle disposed reverse osmosis membranes (at laboratory scale) and to transform them into membranes that will be used in the the treatment of waters from different sources: wastewater, surface water and osmotic solutions. For this reason, INREMEM will study 5 different techniques where the recycled membranes will be implemented: i) biomembranes (BM) for the treatment of surface water, ii) membrane bioreactors (MBR) for wastewater treatment, iii) forward osmosis for wastewater treatment, iv) electrodialysis (ED) for the regeneration of osmotic solutions and v) membrane distillation (MD) for the regeneration of osmotic solutions.
INREMEM will study an alternative membrane management route to the disposal in landfills once the membranes are not capable of achieving the objectives set in the water treatment processes. In this way, INREMEM will contribute to the effort of the European Union to become a “recycling society”, as it is set in the Waste Framework Directive (Directive 2008/98/CE).
Reference: CTM2015-65348-C2-1-R (MINECO/FEDER, UE)
More information: http://inremem.simplesite.com/
Membrane Pilot Plants: