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Research Papers

Thermo-Economic Comparisons of Different Types of Solar Desalination Processes

[+] Author and Article Information
Mohamed A. Sharaf

Department of Engineering Science, Faculty of Petroleum and Mining Engineering,  Suez Canal University, Salah Neseem, Al-Maamal (43713), Suez City, Egyptswazy20@hotmail.com

J. Sol. Energy Eng 134(3), 031001 (Apr 04, 2012) (10 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4005752 History: Received January 23, 2011; Revised November 19, 2011; Published April 03, 2012; Online April 04, 2012

Many types of desalination technologies are widely used around the worldwide. Thermal and membrane types dominated the market share among the other technologies (freezing, electrodialysis, and ion-exchange). Currently, multistage flash considered the power house of desalination technologies; however, in the last few decades, multi effect distillation and reverse osmosis (RO) technologies were proven as reliable and cost efficient processes. But comparing and electing the most efficient type between conventional desalination technologies is still under scope. It is very hard to decide which type or technique is reliable and thermo-economically efficient. Also, it becomes harder to decide which type is thermo-economically efficient when desalination process is combined with solar energy. In this work, different types of solar desalination processes are thermo-economically compared and analyzed. Results revel that RO and multi effect distillation-thermal vapor compression are recommended according to specific solar area (SSA m2 /(m3 /d)), total water price (TWP $/m3 ), thermo-economic product cost (cp $/GJ), and the gain ratio (GR). The comparisons were performed based on two scenarios: (1) different operating conditions due to each individual technology and (2) uniform operating conditions.

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Copyright © 2012 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Global solar radiation data results based on hourly, daily average (11 h), and daily average (24 h) variations (winter condition)

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Figure 1

SDS software library browser under MATLAB /SIMULINK interface [14]

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Figure 3

A schematic diagram of SORC assisted RO-PEX and MED-PF-MVC desalination processes.

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Figure 4

A schematic diagram of solar thermal power cycle assisted thermal desalination processes (MSF-BR, MED-PF, MED-PF-TVC)

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