The water purification process known as ultrafiltration (UF) involves forcing water through a semipermeable membrane. Water and low-molecular-weight solutes pass through the membrane to the permeate side, while suspended solids and high-molecular-weight solutes stay on the retentate side.
Let’s look at how the ultrafiltration membrane’s service life is extended.
What makes ultrafiltration important?
The silt density index of water can be decreased and particles that can clog reverse osmosis membranes can be removed using ultrafiltration. In the upstream of the reverse osmosis unit, ultrafiltration is frequently used to pre-treat surface water, seawater, and biologically treated municipal water.
How is the ultrafiltration membrane’s life extended?
Modules for ultrafiltration membranes have a finite lifespan. The project's overall filtration cost is directly influenced by the ultrafiltration membrane’s service life. Therefore, when making a purchase decision, the ultrafiltration membrane module's service life is crucial.
For your information, the following are 4 crucial treatments for extending the useful life of ultrafiltration membranes:
1. Consistently sanitise the ultrafiltration membrane modules
The water source is exceptionally clean because, tubular ultrafiltration membranes can typically capture very small foreign objects or microorganisms. However, as this simply filters bacteria rather than killing them, it needs to be disinfected frequently to prevent an excessive build-up of microorganisms, inside the ultrafiltration membrane module, which would impair the module's ability to filter and reduce its lifespan.
2. Continually monitor the ultrafiltration membrane system's water flow rate and pressure
You must be completely familiar with the performance of the ultrafiltration membrane, before operating the ultrafiltration membrane system. You should also regularly check the water flow rate and pressure, at the ultrafiltration membrane system's inlet and outlet while the system is in operation.
In order to prevent the ultrafiltration membrane module from overloading operation, and permanently damaging the ultrafiltration membrane, operation should be stopped as soon as it is discovered, that the water flow rate or pressure exceeds the range of normal operation.
3. Frequently clean the ultrafiltration membrane
Long-term use of the ultrafiltration system will cause the ultrafiltration membrane module to become heavily contaminated. If these pollutants are not removed for a long period, they will become trapped in the membrane's voids, and lower the ultrafiltration module's filtration effectiveness.
Because of this, the ultrafiltration membrane module is typically cleaned every three months, increasing its useful life and preventing the ultrafiltration membrane from becoming clogged.
4. Sufficient ultrafiltration membrane storage
You must sterilise and clean the ultrafiltration membrane components, if the system is out of commission, for more than 24 hours. In order to prevent the ultrafiltration membrane module from shrinking after dehydration, and destroying the ultrafiltration membrane module structure, the ultrafiltration membrane module must first be sterilised and disinfected, before the protective liquid is injected into the ultrafiltration membrane module.
The four treatment techniques mentioned above claim that they can both, effectively increase membrane service life and lower filtration costs. Additionally, the ultrafiltration membrane module's service life is largely influenced by the cleaning process. Consequently, we must pay close attention to maintenance and cleaning.
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