Membrane distillation for treatment of textile waste water
Author: Bart Nelemans
Summary: With the increase of water scarcity and pollution problems the textile industry has a responsibility to reduce the water stress and disposal. New regulations also stimulated local industry to search for new technologies to minimize pollution and reduce water consumption. Textile is a growing industry in which dyeing, bleaching, printing and finishing grey fabrics uses large amounts of water. Treatment of this textile waste water is difficult due to the variety of materials and processes used in textile manufacturing. The contaminants in the water often contain organics, deflocculation agents, finishing agents and surfactants which can lead to membrane wetting and/or fouling. Also, moderate salt content is often present. Conventional biological treatment and/or foam fractionation is frequently used as a suitable pre treatment for further concentration of the salt content to volume reduction of the waste water towards zero liquid discharge. Surat, in the north eastern part of India, is well known for its long tradition in the textile industry and plays an important role in the Indian economy. The waste water generated by a dying industry was used in this project to show the potential of membrane distillation in water reuse and waste water reduction.