ADVANCED DESIGN OF COUPLED DIRECT CONTACT MEMBRANE/SOLAR POND FOR LOW COST DESALINIZATION
(Nevada Renewable Energy Consortium and the U.S. Dept. of Energy)
These collaborative projects with Desert Research Institute and the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering tested the design of direct contact membrane distillation in carbonate –rich brines as well as field testing of solar pond heat storage systems. This work developed numerical models based on the FLUENT simulator package to predict both the stability of the solar ponds, but also the efficiency of membrane distillation coupled with solar ponds. Dr. Francisco Suarez, now at the Catholic University of Chile is continuing this work with applications to hyper-arid regions of northern Chile.
Published research on the topic:
Suarez, F., S. W. Tyler. Comments on “Evaluation of systems coupling vacuum membrane distillation and solar energy for seawater desalination.” 2011. Chemical Engineering Journal.
Suraez, F., A.E. Childress and S.W. Tyler. Temperature evolution of an experimental salt-gradient solar pond. 2010. Journ. of Water and Climate Change. DOI: 10.2166/wcc.2010.101.
Suarez, F., A. Childress and S.W. Tyler. A theoretical study of a direct contact membrane distillation system coupled to a salt-gradient solar pond for terminal lakes reclamation. 2010. Water Research. DOI: 10.1016/j.watres.2010.05.050.
Suarez, F., A.E. Childress and S.W. Tyler. A fully-coupled, transient double diffusive convection model for salt-gradient solar ponds. 2010. International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer. 53:1718-1730.