Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Calls for proposals for desalination research

The Middle East Desalination Research Centre (MEDRC) has published a call for proposals for a total of nine research projects, aimed at advancing progress in desalination technology. The Centre is located in Muscat, Sultanate of Oman, and aims to address problems of water shortage in the Middle East and North Africa. It works in close cooperation with the European Commission, which has recently awarded a grant of ECU 1 million, to be used for the Centre's research and training activities of the. This represents the first transfer of the ECU 3 million pledge made by the Commission in 1996.

Full specifications and the application procedure for each project are contained in the "Guidelines for the preparation of proposals". All proposals must involve at least one partner from the Middle East/North Africa. The Centre will fund up to 50% of the costs of each project. The research projects being tendered are as follows:

- Simplification of MSF plant design (workshop);
- New scale prevention techniques for distillation processes;
- Improved design of reverse osmosis systems;
- Development of a reference design package for small and medium reverse osmosis units;
- Membrane development to meet the requirements of hybrid desalination systems;
- Innovative concepts;
- Development of a standardised form and content of operation and maintenance manuals;
- Development of an O&M training strategy (workshop);
- Assessment of the composition of disposal brines.

In addition, the Centre will fund research projects outside the specified project series. They are currently seeking the submission of pre-proposals, briefly describing the contents of the proposed project. These projects will receive re-directed funding from other areas, and therefore must show significant merit and value. The following list of topics serves as a guide for suitable projects:

- Thermal desalination;
- Membrane desalination;
- Alternative desalination technologies;
- Hybrid systems;
- Energy issues and renewable energy integration;
- Operation and maintenance issues;
- Environmental issues;
- Intakes and outfalls;
- Assessment studies;
- Certification programmes.

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