A solar membrane-based wastewater treatment system for high-quality water production
School of Engineering
© 2020 Elsevier Ltd This study proposes a novel solar wastewater treatment system comprising efficient solar energy absorption and contaminant separation processes. The proposed system aims to overcome the drawbacks of previous membrane-based systems especially high energy demand and lack of a complex wastewater consideration. Synthetic wastewater was prepared and the solar system was experimentally analysed under climatic conditions of Perth, Western Australia in summer and winter. The findings revealed that the solar thermal efficiency of the system fluctuated mainly around 63% in summer and 52% in winter. The system reached its maximum exergy efficiency in the afternoon with 5.54% and 4.82% for summer and winter, respectively. Moreover, the highest rate of treated water in summer and winter were 4.21 and 2.85 L/m2h, respectively. The results also indicated that the removal percentages of Fe, Mn, Cu, Na, K, and Ca were 96, 89, 96, 100, 100, and 94%, respectively. In addition, almost 100% of organics and nutrients were removed. The highest recorded gained output ratio and overall efficiency were 0.71 and 49.6% in summer, while these parameters were 0.58 and 46.6% in winter. Overall, the proposed solar-driven membrane-based system is a feasible and efficient option in the separation of contaminants from wastewater.