ABB Ability™ for Water & Wastewater

Desalination

Introduction

Water covers two-thirds of the earth’s surface and makes up 75% of the human body. It is the cradle of life, but some parts of our planet have almost none and many regions are critically short of drinking water.

Key Challenges

Key Challenges

Drinking water from the sea

If you think seawater is undrinkable – think again! Cutting-edge water solutions are helping turn seawater into drinking water to help solve this global crisis. In fact, seawater desalination is one of the most important methods of producing reliable water supplies near population centers in the driest parts of the world. Desalination plants are built to provide greater water security and reduce consumption of non-renewable freshwater.

But the process typically involves a high energy-consuming process making electricity one of the biggest running costs in desalination. Solving high-energy consumption needs using systems that improve energy efficiency and productivity in water processes has become a necessity.

  • «…Depending on the type of desalination process, energy consumption is between 20 and 60 percent of total production cost.…»

The Power of Digital

The Power of Digital

Solving industry needs through digitalization

New ways of addressing desalination plant issues involve a set of solutions that include electrical packages, reverse osmosis (RO) technology as well as a range of automation products.

Intelligent motor control systems significantly reduce the amount of energy consumed by motors used to drive pumps and other equipment at desalination plants, compared to traditional suction-valve control. By improving energy efficiency, costs can be lowered, making potable water more affordable and therefore accessible to more people.

Reverse osmosis technology pumps brackish water or seawater at high pressure through a fine-pored, semi-permeable membrane in a closed vessel. Concentrated brine and impurities remain on one side of the membrane; water molecules pass through it, resulting in potable water on the other side. Exerting pressure with a pump is necessary because in regular osmosis, the water molecules would naturally flow the other way – in the direction of higher concentrations of salt and impurities.

Smart drives can reduce plant downtime, ease mechanical stress on pumps and electrical stress on motors, and extend the life of the semi-permeable membranes at the heart of the RO desalination process.

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Resources

Resources

Featured stories

Who says seawater is undrinkable?

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Jeddah Reverse Osmosis Desalination Plant Phase 1, Saudi Arabia

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Jeddah Reverse Osmosis Desalination Plant Phase 2, Saudi Arabia

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