Desalination solution

Veolia Water Solutions and Technologies has acquired rights to commercialise a desalination technology developed at the University of South Carolina.


Veolia Water Solutions and Technologies has acquired worldwide rights to commercialise a patented Zero Discharge Desalination (ZDD) technology developed at the University of South Carolina.


The technology uses a combination of separation processes, including an electro-dialysis device, to remove divalent salts from water.


The process prevents the salts from precipitating during the process of producing purified water and allows greater water recovery.


Recent pilot testing has proven that the technology can achieve 97 per cent recovery on brackish water over an extended time period.


Large-scale piloting will be completed in 2009 to validate life-cycle costs prior to a demonstration plant being built.


As part of the larger-scale piloting, a separate cost analysis will determine the marketability of by-products produced by the process.


The technology could be used to retrofit existing reverse osmosis (RO) facilities, in which ZDD is expected to increase recovery rates from 75 to 97 per cent.


ZDD technology was originally developed by Dr Thomas A Davis from the Department of Chemical Engineering at the University of South Carolina and was licensed to ZDD Incorporated by the university as part of its programme to encourage commercialisation of its technologies.