Research Seminar Series
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Audrey Luiz, Room 413, or Dale McClure, Room 413,
Recycling of coal seam gas-associated water by membrane distillation
Increasing demand of gas as a substitute for coal and oil in the world has resulted in development of coal seam gas (CSG) as it is becoming an important source of energy in Australia. CSG is a natural gas extracted from low and high rank coals and contains more than 98% methane and less than 2% of CO2 and nitrogen compounds. CSG production results in large quantities of brackish water as a by-product dominated by sodium, chloride and bicarbonate. The National Water Commission estimated at least 300 giga-litres of coal seam gas associated water (CSGAW) production each year in Australia, which is accompanied by suggests 31 million tons of salts produced from it each year. A major challenge in CSG production is manage a large volume of by-product which must be treated before environmental release or beneficial reuse due to health and environmental effects.
In this study, the vacuum membrane distillation (VMD) is considered for CSG synthetic water treatment as an alternative technology due to easy scaling up, simplicity and operations compared to reverse osmosis (RO) membrane filtration or conventional distillation. The objective of this study is to allow membrane distillation to become competitive in the gas and oil industry in comparison to reverse osmosis (RO) system specially when using renewable energy sources such as solar and geothermal energy or any low grade and industrial waste heat. The operating conditions such as temperature gradient, downstream pressure and flow rate as well as membrane characterisation were evaluated to optimize the VMD process. Finally, the membrane properties were investigated to modify in order to increase the flux in system as a future study.
About the speaker
Farideh Heidarpour is a PhD student working with Dr. Soryong Chae in the School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering.