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Seminar | Applied Materials Division

Desalination at the Water-Energy Nexus: Emerging Technologies Beyond Reverse Osmosis

AMD Seminar

Abstract: Desalination (i.e., the removal of salt from water) plays an increasing role in ensuring water security and promoting environmental sustainability. While reverse osmosis (RO) comprises most new desalination capacity globally, there are application areas where RO has limitations. Our research group works on emerging desalination technologies to overcome the limitations of RO in several areas at the water-energy nexus.

In this presentation, we present our recent work on four emerging water treatment and desalination technologies:  capacitive deionization, membrane distillation, nanofiltration, and bipolar membrane electrodialysis. I will first introduce the mechanisms of these technologies and then give an overview of the recent and ongoing work in our lab in these areas. The type of research we perform in these areas include theoretical modeling, system-scale analysis and optimization, fundamental investigation of treatment processes, and development of novel materials for performance enhancement. The relevance of our work to the water-energy nexus lies in (1) enhancing the energy efficiency of water treatment and desalination and (2) treating challenging wastewater resulting from energy production.

Bio: Shihong Lin is an assistant professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering and the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at Vanderbilt University. Lin received his Ph.D. in environmental engineering from Duke University. His current research is mostly focused on water treatment and desalination processes.