The tremendous amount of published researched, performed in the past two decades, has contributed to advances in RO desalination technology, although it is considered that key issues have been addressed inefficiently and unsatisfactorily. In this lecture, R&D priorities will be outlined and weaknesses of presently used approaches to address these issues will be indicated. To facilitate progress, a generalized methodology will be presented, relying on two main pillars; i.e.
- R&D work at small scale, dealing mainly with a) membrane material development, b) membrane module design and spacers, c) operating issues (fouling, scaling, monitoring).
- A comprehensive framework for RO process modeling/simulation at large scale, utilizing results from the above small-scale studies, that will cater to the needs of designing and operating desalination plants.
The challenges and approaches will be reviewed in integrating information from studies at small-scale into a large-scale model. Emphasis will be placed on systematizing (or setting targets of) small-scale/laboratory work to serve multiple objectives; i.e. in addition to gaining improved understanding of particular phenomena, to obtain correlations of key parameters (representative of these phenomena) to be directly used in practice as well as provide the necessary input for model/simulator development. Progress made so far and prospects in implementing this methodology will be summarized.
From 1985 to present, Prof. Anastasios J. Karabelas serves as the Director of Laboratory of Natural Resources & Renewable Energies, CERTH. He has served as an expert and representative of Greece in high-level committees of European Commission and was a member of various advisory boards of academic institutions, scientific and professional organizations and journals. His research interest is on multiphase flow processes and colloidal systems, with emphasis on membrane separations and environmental pollution abatement. This research is applied to process equipment and plant design, including water treatment/purification and utilization of renewable energies.
Prof. Anastasios was the founding member of Chemical Process and Energy Resources Institute (CPERI), Center for Research and Technology-Hellas (CERTH), Thessaloniki. He was also a faculty in Chemical Engineering Department at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki from 1978 to 2005 and was a Senior Research Engineer in Shell Development Co, Houston from 1970 to 1978. Prof. Anastasios holds a degree in Chemical Engineering from the National Technical University of Athens in Greece and obtained his MS and Ph.D. at the University of Illinois, USA.