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Second Thermal and Fluids Engineering  Conference

ISSN: 2379-1748
ISBN: 978-1-56700-430-4

A SOLAR ENERGY DRIVEN AND HOLLOW FIBER MEMBRANE-BASED HUMIDIFICATION-DEHUMIDIFICATION DESALINATION SYSTEM: EXPERIMENT AND SIMULATION

Guopei Li
Key Laboratory of Enhanced Heat Transfer and Energy Conservation of Education Ministry, School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou 510640, China

Li-Zhi Zhang
Key Laboratory of Enhanced Heat Transfer and Energy Conservation of Education Ministry, School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou 510640, China; State Key Laboratory of Subtropical Building Science, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou 510640, China

Abstract

A novel solar energy driven and membrane-based air humidification-dehumidification desalination (MHDD) system is proposed as an attractive alternative for desalination. To investigate the performance of the system, a test rig is designed and constructed. The test rig consists of a U-tube evacuated solar collector, a heat storage water tank, a membrane humidifier and a dehumidifier. To realize a water-salt separation, a hollow fiber membrane module is employed as the humidifier to humidify air with solar energy heated sea water. The humidified air is then cooled and condensed in the dehumidifier to obtain distilled water. A theoretical model based on heat and mass transfer balances in each component of the whole system is developed and validated with the experimental data. Performance indices of the system, such as accumulated water production during the operation period (AP), specific electric energy consumption on unit volume of water production (SEC), coefficient of performance (COP) and electric coefficient of performance (COPE) are investigated. The effects of the process parameters including the saline water flow rate and the inlet air flow rate of the membrane module, etc., on system performance are examined in detail. The results of this study are used to suggest new areas of improvement for future large-scale engineering projects.

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