Special Issue "Osmotic Power"

A special issue of Energies (ISSN 1996-1073).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 August 2015).

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Dr. Chuyang Y. Tang
Website
Guest Editor
Department of Civil Engineering, The University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong, China
Interests: membrane technology; desalination; wastewater reclamation; water chemistry; environmental materials
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

When river water flows into a sea, a substantial amount of energy is released from the mixing of the two waters. Salinity gradient power (SGP), as its name suggests, is a form of chemical potential energy arising from the salinity difference. It is also commonly called “osmotic energy.” With an osmotic pressure difference of approximately 2.7 MPa between fresh water and seawater (equivalent to the potential energy from a waterfall with a 270 m elevation difference), an osmotic energy of up to 0.75 kWh/m3 can be extracted. The total amount of osmotic energy that can be potentially extracted from mixing fresh water and seawater is estimated to be around 1 terawatts—an amount that is on par with global hydroelectric power generation [1,2]. Aside from the mixing of fresh water and seawater, researchers are also exploring many other possibilities, such as the beneficial use of saline brine and wastewater for energy production. A wide range of different osmotic power extraction technologies (e.g., pressure retarded osmosis, reverse electrodialysis, and capacitive mixing) and their derivatives (e.g., the hybrid of pressure retarded osmosis with the desalination process) have been actively pursued in recent years.

This Special Issue of Energies welcomes works related to the topic of extracting and  beneficially using osmotic pressure. Both original contributions and reviews concerning recent advances in theory, materials, and processes development, operational issues, and novel applications are greatly welcome.

[1] Skilhagen, S.E.; Dugstad, J.E.; Aaberg, R.J. Desalination 2008, 220, 476–482.
[2] Logan, B.E.; Elimelech, M. Nature 2012, 488, 313–319.

Prof. Dr. Chuyang Y. Tang
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • clean energy
  • osmotic energy
  • salinity gradient power
  • pressure retarded osmosis
  • reverse electrodialysis
  • capacitive mixing

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Open AccessCommunication
Sodium Tetraethylenepentamine Heptaacetate as Novel Draw Solute for Forward Osmosis—Synthesis, Application and Recovery
Energies 2015, 8(11), 12917-12928; https://doi.org/10.3390/en81112344 - 16 Nov 2015
Cited by 14
Abstract
Osmotic energy, as a sustainable energy source with little environmental impact, has drawn much attention in both academia and industry in recent years. Osmotically driven membrane processes can harvest the osmotic energy and thus have great potential to produce sustainable clean water or [...] Read more.
Osmotic energy, as a sustainable energy source with little environmental impact, has drawn much attention in both academia and industry in recent years. Osmotically driven membrane processes can harvest the osmotic energy and thus have great potential to produce sustainable clean water or electric energy. The draw solution, as an osmotic component, has been more and more explored by scientists in recent years in order to achieve a high osmotic pressure and suitable molecular size. In this work, a novel draw solute—sodium tetraethylenepentamine heptaacetate (STPH)—is synthesized and identified by nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (1H-NMR) and Fourier transform infrared (FTIR). Its solution properties are optimized in terms of the solution pH and concentration, and related to the forward osmosis (FO) performance. A water flux of 28.57 LMH and a low solute flux of 0.45 gMH can be generated with 0.5 g/mL STPH draw solution and de-ionized water (DI water) as the feed solution under pressure retarded osmosis (PRO) mode, which is superior to the FO performance with many other draw solutes reported. Further FO desalination test shows a stable water flux of 9.7 LMH with 0.3 g/mL STPH draw solution and 0.6 M NaCl feed solution. In addition, the draw solution recovery is also investigated. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Osmotic Power)
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Review

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Open AccessReview
Recent Advances in Osmotic Energy Generation via Pressure-Retarded Osmosis (PRO): A Review
Energies 2015, 8(10), 11821-11845; https://doi.org/10.3390/en81011821 - 20 Oct 2015
Cited by 39
Abstract
Global energy consumption has been highly dependent on fossil fuels which cause severe climate change and, therefore, the exploration of new technologies to produce effective renewable energy plays an important role in the world. Pressure-retarded osmosis (PRO) is one of the promising candidates [...] Read more.
Global energy consumption has been highly dependent on fossil fuels which cause severe climate change and, therefore, the exploration of new technologies to produce effective renewable energy plays an important role in the world. Pressure-retarded osmosis (PRO) is one of the promising candidates to reduce the reliance on fossil fuels by harnessing energy from the salinity gradient between seawater and fresh water. In PRO, water is transported though a semi-permeable membrane from a low-concentrated feed solution to a high-concentrated draw solution. The increased volumetric water flow then runs a hydro-turbine to generate power. PRO technology has rapidly improved in recent years; however, the commercial-scale PRO plant is yet to be developed. In this context, recent developments on the PRO process are reviewed in terms of mathematical models, membrane modules, process designs, numerical works, and fouling and cleaning. In addition, the research requirements to accelerate PRO commercialization are discussed. It is expected that this article can help comprehensively understand the PRO process and thereby provide essential information to activate further research and development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Osmotic Power)
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