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Microbial Desalination for Low Energy Drinking Water

Objective

Shortage of fresh water has become one of the major challenges for societies all over the world. Water desalination offers an opportunity to significantly increase the freshwater supply for drinking, industrial use and irrigation. All current desalination technologies require significant electrical or thermal energy, with today's Reverse Osmosis (RO) desalination units consuming electric energy of at least 3 kWh/m3 – in extensive tests about ten years ago, the Affordable Desalination Collaboration (ADC) in California measured 1.6 kWh/m3 for RO power consumption on the best commercially available membranes, and total plant energy about twice as high.
To overcome thermodynamical limitations of RO, which point to 1.09 kwh/m3 for seawater at 50 % recovery, Microbial Desalination Cells (MDC) concurrently treat wastewater and generate energy to achieve desalination. MDCs can produce around 1.8 kWh of bioelectricity from the handling of 1 m3 of wastewater. Such energy can be directly used to i) totally remove the salt content in seawater without external energy input, or ii) partially reduce the salinity to lower substantially the amount of energy for a subsequent desalination treatment.
MIDES aims to develop the World’s largest demonstrator of an innovative and low-energy technology for drinking water production, using MDC technology either as stand-alone or as pre-treatment step for RO.
The project will focus on overcoming the current limitations of MDC technology such as low desalination rate, high manufacturing cost, biofouling and scaling problems on membranes, optimization of the microbial-electrochemical process, system scaling up and economic feasibility of the technology. This will be achieved via innovation in nanostructured electrodes, antifouling membranes (using nanoparticles with biocide activity), electrochemical reactor design and optimization, microbial electrochemistry and physiology expertise, and process engineering and control.

Call for proposal

H2020-NMP-2015-two-stage
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Coordinator

FCC AQUALIA SA
Address
Calle Federico Salmon 13
28016 Madrid
Spain
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
EU contribution
€ 2 171 823

Participants (11)

FUJIFILM MANUFACTURING EUROPE BV
Netherlands
EU contribution
€ 530 582,33
Address
Oudenstaart 1
5047 TK Tilburg
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
FUNDACION IMDEA AGUA
Spain
EU contribution
€ 965 258,75
Address
Avenida Punto Com N2
28805 Alcala De Henares Madrid
Activity type
Research Organisations
SGL CARBON GMBH
Germany
EU contribution
€ 451 937,50
Address
Werner Von Siemens Strasse 18
86405 Meitingen
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
ACONDICIONAMIENTO TARRASENSE ASSOCIACION
Spain
EU contribution
€ 835 581,25
Address
Carrer De La Innovacio 2
08225 Terrassa
Activity type
Research Organisations
MIKROLIN HUNGARY TERMELO ES SZOLGALTATO KFT
Hungary
EU contribution
€ 160 300
Address
Buzavirag Utca 7
2800 Tatabanya
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
ONCONTROL TECHNOLOGIES LDA
Portugal
EU contribution
€ 274 756,30
Address
Largo Dos Loios
1100-312 Lisboa
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
SIMTECH GMBH
Austria
EU contribution
€ 357 245
Address
Riesstrasse 120
8010 Graz
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
ROOD WIT BLAUW WATER SERVICES BV

Participation ended

Netherlands
EU contribution
€ 0
Address
Ambachtstraat 20
7609 RA Almelo
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
STICHTING IHE DELFT INSTITUTE FOR WATER EDUCATION
Netherlands
EU contribution
€ 430 680
Address
Westvest 7
2611 AX Delft
Activity type
Research Organisations
ECOLE NATIONALE D'INGENIEURS DE GABES
Tunisia
EU contribution
€ 150 000
Address
Omar Ibn El Khattab
6029 Zrig Gabes
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
UNIVERSIDAD DE CHILE

Participation ended

Chile
EU contribution
€ 0
Address
Av. Libertador Bernardo O'higgins 1058
10 Santiago
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments