Reverse Electrodialysis-multi Effect Distillation Unit Fed by Lithium Chloride Solutions
Giacalone, Francesco
Tamburini, Alessandro
Cipollina, Andrea
Micale, Giorgio
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Giacalone F., Tamburini A., Cipollina A., Micale G., 2019, Reverse Electrodialysis-multi Effect Distillation Unit Fed by Lithium Chloride Solutions, Chemical Engineering Transactions, 74, 787-792.
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Salinity Gradient Heat Engines (SG-HEs) have been proposed as a promising technology for converting low-temperature heat into electricity. The SG-HE includes two different processes: (i) a salinity gradient process where the salinity gradient between two solutions is converted into electricity and (ii) a thermal regeneration process where low-grade heat (T<100°C) is used to re-establish the original salinity gradient of the two streams. Among the proposed working solutions, aqueous solution of lithium chloride has been identified as one of the most promising thanks to its remarkable solubility and activity. In this work, a process model to study the performance of a SG-HE constituted by a Reverse ElectroDialysis (RED) unit coupled with a Multi Effect Distillation (MED) unit fed with lithium chloride solution is presented. The influence of the concentration of the inlet solution in the RED unit and the temperature difference in the evaporators of the MED unit on the performance were evaluated by considering ideal membranes. Furthermore, the impact of membrane permselectivity and resistance on the system performance was evaluated. Results showed promising system efficiencies, making this technology attractive for conversion of low-grade heat (<100°C) into electricity, but membrane properties should be enhanced.
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