Desalination of Polymer-Flooding Produced Water at Increased Water Recovery and Minimized Energy

Sosa-Fernandez, Paulina A.; Post, Jan W.; Karemore, Apurva; Bruning, Harry; Rijnaarts, Huub H.M.


When desalinating an industrial stream like polymer-flooding produced water via electrodialysis (ED), high water recoveries, low energy consumption, and reduced membrane area are all desirable. However, little effort has been done until now to experimentally achieve these goals. Encouraged by recent and promising results obtained using aliphatic membranes and pulsed electric field, this study experimentally evaluated different strategies and operational conditions to increase the water recovery while keeping a low energy consumption. The results obtained were analyzed to understand the trade-offs in operative time, water recovery, and energy consumption. Finally, the experimental data was employed to perform an economic analysis, which indicated that although further optimization should be possible, current conditions already make ED desalination of polymer-flooding produced water a sound case from an economical point of view.