1st Edition

Electrically Conductive Membrane Materials and Systems Fouling Mitigation For Desalination and Water Treatment

By Farah Ahmed, Raed Hashaikeh, Nidal Hilal Copyright 2023
    316 Pages 31 Color & 60 B/W Illustrations
    by CRC Press

    316 Pages 31 Color & 60 B/W Illustrations
    by CRC Press

    Electrically Conductive Membrane Materials and Systems offers in-depth insight into the transformative role of electrically conductive materials in membrane separation processes for desalination and water treatment. The book focuses on the intelligent design of conductive membranes and systems, fouling and related phenomena, fouling control using electrically conductive materials, and electrically tunable membrane systems for microfiltration, ultrafiltration, nanofiltration, reverse osmosis, and membrane distillation.

    With rising concerns around inaccessibility to freshwater and the ever increasing threats of population growth, climate change, and urban development, the book brings electrically conducting materials to the forefront of membrane separation technology with an emphasis on their role in the mitigation of fouling and related phenomena. Electrically conducting materials expand the versatility of membrane technology and ultimately improve access to safe water.

    The book is important reading for scientists, engineers, entrepreneurs, and enthusiasts from the water industry who seek to familiarize themselves with a groundbreaking area of study within modern desalination and water treatment.

    • Explores novel membrane materials and systems from preparation methods, materials selection, and their application in monitoring, fouling control, and performance enhancement.

    • Examines the mechanism of fouling prevention and cleaning in various electrically conductive materials.

    • Evaluates the scalability of antifouling materials and coatings, as well as electrically enhanced processes for monitoring and control in membrane separation technology.

    • Assesses advantages and limitations of applying electrically conductive membrane systems to fouling control for specific water treatment applications.

    • Provides a critical review of scientific literature in the specialized area of electrical conductive materials and systems for membrane technology.

    About the authors 
    Chapter 1 Introduction to membrane separation processes
    1.1  Introduction
    1.2  Historical evolution of membrane processes
    1.3  Fundamentals of membrane separation
    1.3.1  Porous membranes
    1.3.2  Non-porous membranes
    1.4  Membrane processes
    1.4.1  Microfiltration
    1.4.2  Ultrafiltration
    1.4.3  Nanofiltration
    1.4.4  Reverse osmosis
    1.4.5  Membrane distillation
    1.4.6  Forward osmosis
    1.5  Membrane materials
    1.6  Conclusion
    1.7  Bibliography

    Chapter 2 Fouling and related phenomena
    2.1  Introduction
    2.2  Pressure-driven membrane processes
    2.2.1  High pressure membrane processes (NF, RO)
    2.2.2  Low pressure membrane processes (MF, UF)
    2.3  Modeling of fouling
    2.4  Membrane distillation
    2.4.1  Wetting
    2.4.2  Fouling
    2.4.3  Scaling
    2.5  Implications of fouling: the case of the Tampa Bay seawater reverse osmosis facility
    2.6  Conclusion
    2.7  Bibliography

    Chapter 3 Monitoring, prevention and control of fouling and related phenomena
    3.1  Introduction
    3.2  Process monitoring
    3.3  Status of monitoring in membrane separation processes
    3.3.1  Industrial practice
    3.3.2  Recent developments in in situ monitoring techniques for fouling and related phenomena
    3.3.3  Role of electrochemical impedance spectroscopy in membrane processes
    3.4  Status of membrane cleaning and control of fouling and related phenomena
    3.4.1  Pressure-driven processes
    3.4.2  Membrane distillation
    3.5  Conclusion
    3.6  Bibliography

    Chapter 4 Electrical conductive membranes for fouling mitigation
    4.1   Introduction
    4.2  Polymers
    4.2.1  Electrical conductivity in conducting polymers
    4.2.2   Electrochemical properties of conducting polymers
    4.3  Metals
    4.4  Carbon-based nanomaterials
    4.4.1  Carbon nanotubes
    4.4.2  Graphene
    4.5  Polymer composites
    4.5.1  Polymer-CNT composites
    4.5.2  Polymer-graphene composites
    4.5.3  Percolation threshold
    4.6  Measurement of electrical conductivity
    4.6.1  Four point probe
    4.7  Preparation of electrically conducting membrane systems
    4.7.1  Vacuum filtration
    4.7.2  Electrospinning
    4.7.3  Dip coating
    4.7.4  Drop casting
    4.7.5  Spin coating
    4.8  Conclusion
    4.9  Bibliography

    Chapter 5 Electrically conductive membranes for fouling mitigation
    5.1  Introduction
    5.2  Mechanisms of fouling prevention and cleaning with conductive membranes
    5.2.1  Oxidation of foulants
    5.2.2  Electrochemical bubble generation
    5.2.3  Antimicrobial activity
    5.3   Electrically conductive membranes in desalination
    5.3.1  Reverse osmosis
    5.3.2  Nanofiltration
    5.3.3  Membrane distillation
    5.3.4  Other
    5.4  Electrically conductive membranes in water treatment
    5.4.1  Removal and/or degradation of organic contaminants
    5.4.2  Microbial decontamination
    5.4.3  Oily wastewater treatment
    5.4.4  Removal of toxic metals
    5.4.5  Other
    5.5  Conclusion
    5.6  Bibliography

    Chapter 6 Electrically conductive spacers for fouling mitigation in desalination and water treatment
    6.1  Introduction
    6.2  Effect of spacer geometry
    6.3  Role of spacers in fouling mitigation
    6.3.1  Surface modification
    6.3.2  3D printed spacers
    6.3.3  Electrically conductive spacers for fouling mitigation
    6.4  In situ characterization of feed spacer fouling
    6.5  Conclusion
    6.6  Bibliography

    Chapter 7 Electrically conductive systems in membrane distillation 
    7.1  Introduction
    7.2  Electrically conducting materials for real-time monitoring
    7.2.1  Wetting
    7.2.2  Fouling
    7.3  Challenges in technology development
    7.3.1  Barriers to MD commercialization
    7.3.2  Upscaling electrically conducting systems for MD
    7.4  Conclusion
    7.5  Bibliography

    Chapter 8 Electrically tunable membrane systems
    8.1  Introduction
    8.2  Electrically tunable performance of pressure-driven processes
    8.2.1  Polyelectrolyte gels
    8.2.2  Carbon nanotubes
    8.2.3  Graphene
    8.2.4  Conducting polymers
    8.2.5  MXenes
    8.2.6  Other
    8.3  Electrically tunable performance of membrane distillation
    8.3.1  Joule heating
    8.3.2  Direct electric heating during DCMD for brackish water desalination
    8.3.3  Direct electric heating during AGMD for seawater desalination
    8.4   Conclusion
    8.5  Bibliography

    Chapter 9 Future prospects
    9.1  Introduction
    9.2   Simplified desalination pretreatment
    9.3  Scalable fabrication
    9.4  Module integration
    9.5  Process optimization
    9.6  Toxicity of nanomaterials
    9.7  Conclusion
    9.8  Bibliography


    Dr. Farah Ahmed is a research fellow at the Water Research Center - New York University Abu Dhabi. She is an affiliate member at the Mohammed in Rashid Academy of Scientists in the United Arab Emirates. Dr. Ahmed received her doctorate in interdisciplinary engineering from Khalifa University of Science and Technology in 2018. Her research expertise lies in the area of advanced membrane materials for desalination and water treatment, with a focus on emerging low-energy technologies. She has authored many articles in prestigious international journals and book chapters, and delivered invited lectures at various international conferences and institutions around the world. Dr. Ahmed serves on the editorial and advisory boards of a number of journals including Membranes, Separation Technologies, Nature Communications, Energies and Desalination. 

    Professor Raed Hashaikeh is a Tenured Professor of Mechanical Engineering at New York University-Abu Dhabi and a Member of the Mohammed bin Rashid Academy of Scientists in the UAE. He received his MSc and PhD in Materials Engineering from McGill University in 2000, and 2005, respectively. In 2008. He joined the Mechanical and Materials Engineering Department at the Masdar Institute in Abu Dhabi as an Assistant Professor and went through the ranks to become a Full Professor in 2016. Between 2017 and 2019, he was a Professor at the Chemical Engineering Department, Khalifa University. Before moving to UAE, he spent two years (2006-2008) at FPInnovations-Paprican Division, Canada, as a scientist. He was awarded the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) Industrial Research and Development Fellow in 2006. He was also a visiting scholar at MIT between 2008 and 2009. He has built core strengths in materials processing, characterization and applications. The objectives of his research in electrically conductive membranes is to develop high-performing membrane materials for specific water treatment and desalination applications and to apply these multifunctional membranes to fouling control and performance enhancement.

    Professor Nidal Hilal is a Chartered Engineer in the United Kingdom, a registered European Engineer, an elected Fellow of both the Institution of Chemical Engineers, and the Learned Society of Wales. He received his bachelor's degree in chemical engineering in 1981 followed by a master's degree in advanced chemical engineering from Swansea University in 1986. He received his PhD degree from Swansea University in 1988. In 2005 he was awarded a Doctor of Science degree (DSc) from the University of Wales in recognition of an outstanding research contribution in the fields Water Processing including Desalination and Membrane Science and Technology. He was also awarded, by the Emir of Kuwait, the prestigious Kuwait Prize (Kuwait Medal) of Applied Science for the year 2005 and the Menelaus Medal 2020, by the Learned Society of Wales, for excellence in engineering and technology.

    His research interests lie broadly in the identification of innovative and cost-effective solutions within the fields of nano-water, membrane technology, water treatment, desalination and colloid engineering. He has published 8 handbooks and around 600 articles in the refereed scientific literature. He has chaired and delivered lectures at numerous international conferences and prestigious organizations around the world.

    Professor Hilal sits on the editorial boards of a number of international journals, is an advisory board member of several multinational organizations, and has served on/consulted for industry, government departments, research councils, and universities on an international basis.