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A new photovoltaic desalination plant


The main characteristics of reverse osmosis desalination make it useful to investigate the possibility of using solar energy to power a reverse osmosis desalination plant, by taking advantage of two complementary aspects of the problem: the need to desalinate sea water to obtain drinking water is larger where less rain falls and there are more sunny days per annum in such places. This project concerns the assessment of the feasibility of such a desalination plant.

Italenergie Spa was present since the beginning (1979) in developing and testing the reverse osmosis process energized by a photovoltaic current generator.
Near the direct energy absorption reduction, there are other possibilities to reduce energy consumption in solving other problems connected to the water pre-treatment steps, where the use of acid solutions to sterilize the water involved the use of electrical motors to inject and dose the acids and mainly a very short lifespan of all the components touched by the infected solutions, above all the high pressure pumps and membranes. As the main efforts of the producers of reverse osmosis plants were and are mainly in the pressure pumps and in the membrane development, Italenergie devolved its efforts in the solutio of the sea water pretreatment and fresh water after-treatment, always in the aim to improve the water quality and to reduce the energy absorption.
The experimental results have to be transferred in a new conceived plant near a new photovoltaic current generator of 100 KWp realized by the Commune of Tremiti Islands, which will work in parallel with the already existing 65 KWp.
The reverse osmosis shall have a rate of 6 m3/h of desalinated water. The input of sea water, considering a filtration efficiency of the membrane of 42%, will be of about 14 m3/h.

Funding Scheme

CSC - Cost-sharing contracts


Italenergie SpA
Viale Della Repubblica 39
67039 Sulmona

Participants (2)

Professor KYRITSIS S.
15236 Nea Pandeli, Athens
Sylvensteinstrasse 2