desalination Essay

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DESIGN PROCESS AND CRITERIA Environmental group Veolia and Construction giant John Holland teamed up to create ‘Blue Water’, the company responsible for designing and building the Kurnell Desalination Plant. The plant aims to be completed by mid 2010, and will start conducting sample testing in June 2009. Much of the equipment in the plant has been sourced from overseas, with around 17 countries contributing key parts. The desalination plant comprises of a series of structures, including: • A reverse osmosis facility • Drinking water storage tanks • Administration building • A waste water treatment facility • Pre and post treatment plants • Stormwater management system • Intake pump station and screening plant The reverse osmosis building will consist of 4,600 reverse osmosis cylinders, containing 36,000 membranes to produce desalinated water. This sophisticated membrane technology is similar to that used at the Wollongong Recycled Water Plant that supplies BlueScope Steel. The membranes block particles and salts, so only fresh water can pass through. The remaining seawater and salts are returned to the ocean. The design process of the desalination of seawater is as follows: 1. Seawater will be extracted from the ocean and pumped to the desalination plant. The intake structures are designed to minimise impacts to aquatic ecology; 2. The seawater will pass through pre-treatment processes to remove suspended solids and other solid matter. This will be achieved through coagulation and sedimentation followed by filtration, or by using microfiltration or ultrafiltration membranes upstream of the reverse osmosis membranes; 3. The seawater will then be passed through Reverse Osmosis (RO) membranes. The RO process uses a semi-permeable membrane to separate salts from seawater. The membrane retains the salts, viruses, micro-organisms and other impurities,

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