Forward osmosis (FO) has rarely been investigated as a treatment technology for industrial wastewaters. Within this study, common FO model equations were applied to simulate forward osmosis treatment of industrial wastewaters from the automobile industry. Three different models from literature were used and compared. Permeate and reverse solute flux modelling was implemented using MS Excel with a Generalized Reduced Gradient (GRG) Nonlinear Solver. For the industrial effluents, the unknown diffusion coefficients were calibrated and the influences of the membrane parameters were investigated. Experimental data was used to evaluate the models. It could be proven that common model equations can describe FO treatment of industrial effluents from the automobile industry. Even with few known solution properties, it was possible to determine permeate fluxes and draw conclusions about mass transport. However, the membrane parameters, which are apparently not solution independent and seem to differ for each industrial effluent, are critical values. Fouling was not included in the model equations although it is a crucial point in FO treatment of industrial wastewaters. But precisely for this reason, modelling is a good complement to laboratory experiments since the difference between the results allows conclusions to be drawn about fouling.
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