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Researchers achieve major breakthrough with water desalination system
Date:7/13/2009

roject. "It can control a variety of process variables, including the precise measure of chemical additives to condition the water. All the valves are computer-controlled, so the system can adjust itself automatically. We can also see how much energy we're using, and in the software, we've also included various techniques for optimizing the system so that it can run with minimum energy consumption."

"The last time UCLA went into the field with its own newly built pilot system was in the '60s," Cohen said. "This new system is one-twentieth the size of what was built then, maybe even smaller, and can produce up to 30 percent more potable water. So to actually go back to the San Joaquin Valley with new advanced technology and be successful is quite an event."

Rahardianto said that the highly saline agricultural drainage wastewater in the San Joaquin Valley is one of the most difficult source waters to desalt.

"It has been a persistent issue for communities in the valley, one of California's most productive agricultural regions," he said. "While numerous attempts have been made to develop and test various desalting technologies since the 1960s, a practical, cost-effective solution has not yet been adopted, increasingly affecting the ability to sustain agricultural productivity in the region."

Cohen's team is working with water agencies and industries across the United States, as well as with the international community, and collaborates with research institutions such as Ben Gurion University in Israel, Victoria University in Australia and Tarragona University in Spain.

According to Stephen Gray, director of the Institute for Sustainability and Innovation at Victoria University, "the M3 system is a very significant improvement in desalination operations, allowing the membrane systems to effectively and quickly adapt to changes in water quality and to achieve high water recoveries. Such advances are of great importa
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Contact: Wileen Wong Kromhout
wwkromhout@support.ucla.edu
310-206-0540
University of California - Los Angeles
Source:Eurekalert

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