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Kingdom of Bahrain Electricity and Water Authority Master Plan 2015-2030 Water Treatment Review July 2015 Electricity

Kingdom of Bahrain Electricity and Water Authority Master Plan 2015-2030

Kingdom of Bahrain Electricity and Water Authority Master Plan 2015-2030 Water Treatment Review July 2015 Electricity

Water Treatment Review July 2015 Electricity and Water Authority

Kingdom of Bahrain Electricity and Water Authority Master Plan 2015-2030 Water Treatment Review July 2015 Electricity
Kingdom of Bahrain Electricity and Water Authority Master Plan 2015-2030 Water Treatment Review July 2015 Electricity
Kingdom of Bahrain Electricity and Water Authority Master Plan 2015-2030 Water Treatment Review July 2015 Electricity

Kingdom of Bahrain Electricity and Water Authority Master Plan 2015-2030

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28 July 2015

Water Treatment Review

Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review

July 2015

Kingdom of Bahrain Electricity and Water Authority Master Plan 2015-2030 335975 MEU MWE 0002 http://pims03/pims/llisapi.dll/open/13365683 28

Electricity and Water Authority

P.O. Box 2 Manama Kingdom of Bahrain

Kingdom of Bahrain Electricity and Water Authority Master Plan 2015-2030 335975 MEU MWE 0002 http://pims03/pims/llisapi.dll/open/13365683 28

Mott MacDonald, Office 21, Al Moayed House, Building 2332, Road 2830, Block 428, Al Seef District, Manama, Kingdom of Bahrain

T +973 17586350 F +973 17910087

W www.mottmac.com

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Contents

Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review Contents Chapter Title Page Executive Summary i

Chapter

Title

Page

Executive Summary

 

i

 
  • 1 Introduction

 

6

  • 1.1 Objectives and Scope of Work

 

6

  • 1.2 Background

6

  • 1.3 Methodology

_______________________________________________________________________

7

  • 1.4 Structure of This Report

 

7

  • 2 Water Quality Requirements

 

8

  • 2.1 Water Quality Standards

______________________________________________________________

8

  • 2.2 Comparison of Water Quality Standards __________________________________________________

9

  • 2.3 Recommended Water Quality Standards for Bahrain

11

  • 2.4 Summary _________________________________________________________________________

15

  • 3 Review of Desalination Water Treatment Technologies

16

  • 3.1 Membrane Desalination

 

16

______________________________________________________________

3.1.1

Reverse Osmosis

16

__________________________________________________________________

  • 3.1.1.1 Overview of Process

 

16

  • 3.1.1.2 Review ___________________________________________________________________________

17

3.1.2

Brackish Water Reverse Osmosis (BWRO)

18

3.2

Thermal Desalination

18

________________________________________________________________

3.2.1

Multi-Effect Distillation (MED)

18

  • 3.2.1.1 Overview of Process

 

18

 

________________________________________________________________

  • 3.2.1.2 Review ___________________________________________________________________________

19

3.2.2

Multi-Stage Flash (MSF)

20

  • 3.2.2.1 Overview of Process

 

20

 

________________________________________________________________

  • 3.2.2.2 Review ___________________________________________________________________________

21

  • 3.3 Alternative Desalination Technologies __________________________________________________

22

  • 3.4 Combination of Technologies

_________________________________________________________

23

  • 3.5 Comparison of Desalination Technologies

24

  • 3.5.1.1 Energy Use

25

  • 3.5.1.2 Chemical Consumption

25

  • 3.5.1.3 Advantages and Disadvantages

26

  • 3.6 Summary _________________________________________________________________________

27

  • 4 Review of Desalination Water Treatment Chemicals

29

  • 4.1 Pre-Treatment

 

29

 

_____________________________________________________________________

4.1.1

Control of Bio-Fouling of Seawater Intakes

29

4.1.1.1

Recommendation

30

4.1.2

Control of Bio-Fouling of Membranes

30

  • 4.1.2.1 Coagulation, Flocculation and Sedimentation

30

  • 4.1.2.2 Dissolved Air Floatation (DAF)

 

31

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Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review 4.1.2.3 Recommendations 32 4.1.3 Anti-Scalants 32 4.2

4.1.2.3

Recommendations

32

4.1.3

Anti-Scalants

32

4.2

Hydrocarbons

33

4.2.1

Recommendation

33

4.3

Remineralisation

33

 

___________________________________________________________________

4.3.1

Calcium Carbonate Precipitation

34

4.3.1.1

Langelier Saturation Index

___________________________________________________________

34

  • 4.3.2 Chemicals Used for Remineralisation ___________________________________________________

34

  • 4.3.3 Recommendation

 

36

4.4

Disinfection _______________________________________________________________________

36

  • 4.4.1 Ozone ___________________________________________________________________________

37

  • 4.4.2 Ultraviolet Light

____________________________________________________________________

38

  • 4.4.3 Chlorine Dioxide

39

  • 4.4.4 Chlorine __________________________________________________________________________

39

  • 4.4.5 Comparison of Disinfectant Chemicals

41

  • 4.4.6 Recommendation

 

42

__________________________________________________________________

  • 4.5 Summary _________________________________________________________________________

42

  • 5 Review of Existing Desalination Treatment Sites

43

  • 5.1 Overview of Existing Sites

 

43

  • 5.2 Thermal Desalination Plants

46

__________________________________________________________

5.2.1

Al Hidd IWPP ______________________________________________________________________

46

  • 5.2.1.1 Water Quality ______________________________________________________________________

47

  • 5.2.1.2 Site Issues ________________________________________________________________________

48

  • 5.2.1.3 Recommendations

 

48

5.2.2

Sitra Plant

49

 

________________________________________________________________________

  • 5.2.2.1 Water Quality ______________________________________________________________________

50

  • 5.2.2.2 Site Issues ________________________________________________________________________

50

  • 5.2.2.3 Recommendations

 

51

5.2.3

ALBA Coke Plant

52

 

___________________________________________________________________

  • 5.2.3.1 Water Quality ______________________________________________________________________

53

  • 5.2.3.2 Site Issues ________________________________________________________________________

53

  • 5.2.3.3 Recommendations __________________________________________________________________

53

5.3

Membrane Based Plants _____________________________________________________________

54

5.3.1

Al Dur IWPP

54

  • 5.3.1.1 Water Quality ______________________________________________________________________

56

  • 5.3.1.2 Site Issues ________________________________________________________________________

56

  • 5.3.1.3 Recommendations

 

56

5.3.2

Ras Abu Jarjur (RAJ) Plant

___________________________________________________________

57

  • 5.3.2.1 Water Quality ______________________________________________________________________

58

  • 5.3.2.2 Site Issues ________________________________________________________________________

58

  • 5.3.2.3 Recommendations

 

59

__________________________________________________________________

  • 5.4 Summary _________________________________________________________________________

62

  • 6 Conclusions and Recommendations

63

  • 6.1 Water Quality Standards

_____________________________________________________________

63

  • 6.2 Water Treatment Technologies and Chemicals

63

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Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review 6.3 Recommendations for Existing Bahraini Desalination Plants

6.3

Recommendations for Existing Bahraini Desalination Plants

64

  • 6.3.1 Hidd

64

  • 6.3.2 Sitra

64

  • 6.3.3 Alba

65

  • 6.3.4 Al Dur ____________________________________________________________________________

65

  • 6.3.5 Ras Abu Jarjur (RAJ)

66

7

References

67

Appendices

68

Appendix A. Water Quality Data

69

 

Appendix B. Meeting Minutes

70

Glossary

71

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Executive Summary

Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review Executive Summary The Electricity and Water Authority

The Electricity and Water Authority (EWA) are currently developing their Kingdom of Bahrain Electricity and Water Master Plan 2015-2030. As a part of this Master Plan, Mott MacDonald (MM) undertook a Water Treatment Review in July 2014, which will support the wider water supply planning process by providing recommendations for existing water production facilities.

This document is the output of that review and reports on and evaluates the existing technologies and chemicals currently being used at Bahraini desalination facilities by EWA. A review of the standards for producing potable water in the Gulf and internationally was undertaken in order to produce recommended water quality standards for EWA to adopt. Alternative technologies and chemicals have also been evaluated for their suitability for adoption by EWA and recommendations accordingly.

Water Quality Standards

Bahrain adopts the Gulf Standards Organisation (GSO) Standard for Unbottled Drinking Water (GS/149/2008) which only contains a limited number of parameters compared to those adopted by other Gulf States (Oman, Qatar and Abu Dhabi).

It is recommended that Bahrain revises its standards in accordance with recent developments in international guidelines and in line with other GCC states. This has been discussed with representatives of EWA and they have provided a new set of standards which have been incorporated into this report as Tables 2.2, 2.3, 2.4 and 2.5.

To this extent, recommendations have been provided for updating water quality standards based on WHO guidelines and standards currently being used at non- EWA operated plants such as Al Dur and Hidd.

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Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review Desalination Technology Bahrain water desalination facilities use

Desalination Technology

Bahrain water desalination facilities use a range of technologies including multi- stage flash (MSF), multi-effect distillation (MED), seawater reverse osmosis (SWRO) and brackish water reverse osmosis (BWRO).

Alternative desalination technologies were reviewed including Forward Osmosis, Membrane Distillation and Capacitive Desalination. It is not recommended that these technologies are adopted in Bahrain at the present time, as they have not yet achieved large scale commercial operation.

A comparison was made between MED, MSF, and RO technologies, utilising many criteria including production yield, power consumption, chemical consumption and process robustness.

The MED and MSF thermal desalination processes are robust processes with low maintenance requirements; however their operation is tied to power plant output and when seasonal power demand diminishes, water production follows correspondingly. This is problematic for Bahrain especially in winter months when power demand is lower but water demand does not follow.

On a volumetric basis, while RO uses more chemicals, the technology uses less power and has a greater production yield. The additional cost of chemicals is a fraction of the potential savings in power. RO plants are standalone and can be upgraded and updated in a modular fashion throughout their life.

Whilst it is beneficial to maintain a diversification of desalination technologies, for future plant upgrades it is recommended to consider RO processes as the primary desalination technology. If thermal desalination is selected for combined power and water plants, it is recommended to consider a hybrid MED/RO process for improved power efficiency and reliability.

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Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review Recommendatio ns for Existing Bahraini Desalination Plants

Recommendations for Existing Bahraini Desalination Plants

The existing Bahraini desalination plants have been evaluated and a series of recommendations made to improve resilience, increase efficiencies and reduce costs. The following was noted:

Hidd

This plant appears to be operating well and producing a good quality water. The impact of the power plant on potable water production was highlighted as a problem, which is more noticeable during the winter months. It was recommended to give consideration to RO technology for any future upgrade at Hidd in order to alleviate the production swings due to power and provide some diversification in desalination technology. Potential improvements to the storing and loading of limestone were also highlighted.

Sitra

The Sitra production plant is an MSF plant that has had three major phases, with the oldest being commissioned in 1976 and the latest in 1985. Due to its age, the plant is subject to frequent outages, mainly due to tube failure rates. The plant is also in need of significant civil, structural, mechanical and electrical rehabilitation. Potabilisation does not occur on site but rather occurs through blending with groundwater.

With the on-going objective of reduction in the reliance of groundwater blending and to improve the stability and potabilisation of the supplied water from Sitra, it is recommended to implement a full potabilisation system.

In the long-term, for any future plant replacement or expansion, it is recommended that RO with associated pre-treatment is strongly considered.

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Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review Alba The potable water quality from the

Alba

The potable water quality from the Alba MED plant appears to be achieving acceptable water quality in accordance with the Gulf Standards (GS) with the exception of TDS and pH. To improve TDS and pH values, revised dosing rates for lime and carbon dioxide have been provided for consideration.

Al Dur

The Al Dur plant is operating very well and produces a high standard product water. As it is not coupled to power generation, water can be produced on demand and is not dependent on seasonal changes in power production. In addition, it is equipped with a redundant feed so that it can produce water even during power plant shutdowns making it highly reliable. The system should be considered as a model for reference in the design of new desalination plants for Bahrain.

Some minor improvements to the current arrangement were identified.

The plant

currently uses ferric chloride brought in bags. Given the quantity of ferric chloride

consumption, a bulk delivery and onsite storage system would increase efficiency and should be promoted.

If the final turbidity limit was relaxed for post lime dosing, lime slurry could be used which would result in less water being used for limewater make-up. This would provide the benefit of increasing liquid lime storage durations and lime pumping capacities. Whilst this currently may not be an option, it is worth considering this efficiency as a future plant improvement opportunity.

Ras Abu Jarjur (RAJ)

The RAJ BWRO plant is old and in need of significant civil, structural and mechanical upgrade. There are currently plans to upgrade the existing hollow fibre Du Pont RO racks to Toray spiral wound modules.

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Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review We believe this is a positive step

We believe this is a positive step in the right direction but that a thorough review of available technologies should be undertaken prior to t he full replacement of the Du Pont membranes. In addition, future upgrades should consider alternative energy recovery options.

The hydrocarbon adsorption regeneration system requires a full replacement. As an alternative, it is recommended to investigate other newer technology hydrocarbon adsorption systems with long er lives e.g. zeolites, nano-clays and polymers.

The pH of the final water marginally exceeds 8.0 on occasions and on average the LSI is low at -0.35. Potabilisation dosing recommendations were made as to how to achieve this. Efficiencies can also be made in the lime dosing process through improvements in the control functionality and storage. These improvements would markedly improve site health and safety as well as final water potabilisation.

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1

Introduction

Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review 1 Introduction Mott MacDonald (MML) has been

Mott MacDonald (MML) has been appointed by the Kingdom of Bahrain Electricity and Water Authority (EWA) to undertake a water treatment study as a part of the Electricity and Water Master Plan 2015-2030. The study is to serve as an input to the power and water generation project development; part of the wider Master Plan programme of work.

The purpose of this report is therefore not only to evaluate the existing technologies, chemicals and water quality standards currently being used at Bahraini desalination facilities, but to also provide recommendations for future water treatment in Bahrain.

  • 1.1 Objectives and Scope of Work

The Scope of Work for this project required MM to prepare a “Water Treatment Study” encompassing:

Review existing technologies and chemicals used for water treatment and recommend any changes to bring them up to the State of the art technology.”

This report addresses the issues of water supply standards, existing plants and establishing stand-alone potabilisation systems, and evaluates the latest technologies for Bahrain’s future water supply. Specifically, the objectives are as follows:

  • 1. Review current Bahraini, regional and international water quality standards and recommend any changes that should be adopted by Bahrain in order to follow current best practice and guidance and/or achieve efficiencies in treatment;

  • 2. Evaluate alternative desalination technologies and chemicals and recommend those that should be considered by EWA for future development; and

  • 3. Assess the existing desalination plants technologies and chemical systems and highlight areas for potential upgrading or improvement.

    • 1.2 Background

The Electricity and Water Authority are currently developing their Kingdom of Bahrain Electricity and Water Master Plan 2015-2030. This process involves a detailed review of a range of different aspects of the Authority’s work from estimating future demands and infrastructure requirements, to evaluating raw water resources and potable supply treatment options.

Water in Bahrain is derived from two main sources, namely desalinated seawater and groundwater. Five commercial-scale potable water desalination treatment plants are in operation across the island, operated

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Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review by both EWA and independent private companies.

by both EWA and independent private companies. A range of different treatment technologies are being utilised including both thermal and membrane-based processes.

The plants are of varying ages and there have been a number of developments in the field of desalination since many were commissioned; offering improvements in chemical and energy usage, resilience and both

operational and capital costs.

A holistic review of the methods being currently adopted by the wider

industry is a key part of understanding areas where modifications could be undertaken in order to capture

potential efficiencies. In addition, such an appraisal allows recommendations to be made for the future of water treatment in Bahrain.

  • 1.3 Methodology

This report is based on a literature review, modelling work and information gathered through liaison with the client and five production plant site visits undertaken by MML during July 2014.

The following data was collected and reviewed for the water treatment study:

Spreadsheets received from EWA containing monthly water quality data from Hidd, Sitra, Alba, Al

Dur and Ras Abu Jarjur treatment plants over the period June 2013 to June 2014. This data is reproduced in the tables in Appendix A. A report written by Black and Veatch in 2006 (hereafter referred to as the “B&V Report”) that assessed various potabilisation alternatives in Bahrain and was reviewed for this study.

Chemical modelling was undertaken by the MM team in order to ascertain existing and recommended potabilisation dosing rates.

  • 1.4 Structure of This Report

Section 2 reviews existing national, regional and World Health Organization (WHO) water quality standards and recommends revised standards to be used in Bahrain in order to be kept current with international developments in water quality guidelines.

Sections 3 and 4 review water treatment technologies and chemicals respectively. The latest developments in these areas are described and evaluated, and their applicability for use in Bahrain is discussed.

Section 5 describes the technologies currently adopted at Bahraini desalination plants, reviews their effectiveness and identifies areas for improvement.

A summary of the conclusions and recommendations in the previous chapters is provided in Section 6.

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Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review 2 Water Quality Requirements International water quality
  • 2 Water Quality Requirements

International water quality standards are continually being reviewed and updated with technological developments and medical data. EWA have adopted the Gulf Standards for Unbottled Drinking Water (GS/149/2008) for the plants they own and operate. The water quality standards being adhered to in Bahrain have been reviewed in comparison to current international guidelines from the World Health Organization and other GCC countries. A proposed set of potable water quality standards has been compiled which is recommended to be adopted for both existing and future treatment plants in Bahrain.

  • 2.1 Water Quality Standards

Drinking water quality standards, or ‘guideline values’, describe the quality parameters set for drinking water and can refer to the chemical, physical or biological characteristics of water against which compliance can be assessed. Many countries adopt their own standards; drawn from regional legislation (such as the European Union’s Drinking Water Directive) and/or the recommendations of international bodies (such as the World Health Organization). Standards can be selected not only based on health criteria, but also aesthetic preferences.

Those of particular note for Bahrain are summarised below.

World Health Organization (WHO)

The WHO Guidelines for Drinking-water Quality (2011) provide general recommendations on the need to stabilise and remineralise desalinated waters for consumer use. The guidelines provide limits for naturally occurring chemicals that are of health significance.

The WHO Guidelines identify 32 aesthetic parameters. Some other parameters have recommended values, mainly based on consumer acceptance. The aesthetic parameters most often specified with guideline values are pH (hydrogen ion), chloride, iron, sulphate and aluminium.

Gulf Standards Organisation

Bahrain adopts the GCC Standardization Organization (GSO) standards for Unbottled Drinking Water (GS/149/2008). The GSO standard is “concerned with unbottled drinking water fit for human consumption” and provides both health and aesthetic guideline values which are adopted by, or used as the basis of, standards across the Gulf.

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Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review United Arab Emirates (UAE) The Regulation &

United Arab Emirates (UAE)

The Regulation & Supervision Bureau (RSB) regulate the water sector of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. The Bureau has an obligation under law to ensure the continued availability of potable water. In exercising this duty, they have set water quality standards to ensure safe drinking water supplies to consumers. These were most recently updated in 2014.

Oman

The Directorate General for Specifications and Measurements is responsible for Omani National Standards. Standard No.8: Unbottled Drinking Water was last updated in 2006, based on the World Health Organization 2004 guidelines. It includes both health and aesthetic guideline values.

Qatar

Kahrama’a (Qatar General Electricity & Water Corporation) is an independent corporation supplying water in the State of Qatar and reports complying with both national Health and Safety and WHO standards in its water quality compliance.

  • 2.2 Comparison of Water Quality Standards

Information has been gathered from plants in Oman, Qatar and the UAE in order to review the water quality standards being adopted at desalination plants at a regional scale. The following table presents these water quality standards for comparison against those currently adopted by Independent Water and Power Producer (IWPP) plants in Bahrain for comparison.

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Table 2.1:

Comparison of water quality standards and recommendations for Bahrain

Kingdom of BahrainElectrici ty and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review Table 2.1: Comparison of water quality
WHO EU Directive UK GSO Qatar Oman UAE Bahrain Bahrain
WHO
EU Directive
UK
GSO
Qatar
Oman
UAE
Bahrain
Bahrain

Parameter

Units

Guidelines for Drinking-

98/83/EC

Water Supply

GS/

Kahrama’a Standard

Oman Standard

Abu Dhabi

Hidd

Al Dur

 

water Quality (4th Edition)

(Water Quality)

149/2008

Nr 8/2006

RSB Water Quality Regs 2014

IWPP

IWPP

 

Reg 2000

Colour

Pt-Co Scale

-

Acceptable

20

15

0-15

15

15

15

<1.0

Turbidity

NTU

-

Acceptable

4 (at tap) 1 (at works)

5

0-5

5

4

2 (max)

<0.2

Taste

No Parameter

Acceptable

Acceptable

Acceptable

Acceptable

Acceptable

Unobjectionable

Unobjectionable

Unobjectionable

Odour

No Parameter

Acceptable

Acceptable

Acceptable

Acceptable

Acceptable

Unobjectionable

Unobjectionable

Unobjectionable

Temperature

°C

-

-

-

Acceptable

Acceptable

<40

<40

pH

-

6.5-9.5

6.5-9.5

6.5-8.0

6.5-8.5

9

7.0-9.2

6.5-8.5

7.0 – 8.0

Total dissolved solids

mg/L

-

-

-

100-1,000

125-250

1,000

100-1,000

200-500

Electrical Conductivity

µS/cm

-

<2,500

<2,500

150-400

160-1,600

440-1,100

250-500

Total Hardness

mg/L as

-

-

-

500

300

100-300

CaCO3

Calcium

mg/L as Ca

-

-

-

65-150

200

-

70-200*

Magnesium

mg/L as Mg

-

-

-

10

150

30

-

<30

Alkalinity

mg/L as

-

-

-

65-150

-

70-200

CaCO3

Sodium

mg/L as Na

-

200

200

20

400

150

150

<50

Chloride

mg/L as Cl

-

250

250

50

600

250

250

<100

Aluminium

mg/L as Al

-

0.2

0.2

0.1

0.1

0.2

0.2

<0.2

Iron

mg/L as Fe

-

0.2

0.2

0.1

1.0

0.2

0.2

<0.1

Copper

mg/L as Cu

2.0

2.0

2.0

1.0

0.05

2.0

1.0

1.0

<0.05

Zinc

mg/L as Zn

-

-

-

0.05

3

5.0

3.0

<0.1

Manganese

mg/L as Mn

-

0.5

0.5

0.4

0.1

0.4

0.4

0.05

<0.05

Boron

mg/L as B

2.4

1.0

1.0

0.5

2.4

2.4

1.0

<1.0

 

(updated value)

Residual Chlorine

mg/L as Cl2

0.2 - 5

-

-

<5.0

0.2-1.0

<5.0

0.2-0.5

0.5 – 0.6

0.4-0.6

 

0.2-0.5

(after 30 mins)

Bromate

mg/l

0.01

0.01

0.01

0.01

-

-

-

0.01

0.01

Langelier Saturation

Not set

-

-

0.0-0.5

-

+0.1 - + 0.3

Index

Source:

See References Section.

*Value in brackets indicates turbidity limit after powdered chemical addition such as lime or soda ash. Desalinated water limit must remain at <1.0.

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Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review There are variations in drinking water standards

There are variations in drinking water standards around the Gulf depending on the location and the contract being used.

As can be seen in Table 2.1, the Gulf Standards Organisation (GSO) standard for Unbottled Drinking Water (GS/149/2008), adopted by EWA only contains a limited number of parameters compared to those adopted by the other GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) states included in the table (Oman, Qatar and Abu Dhabi). The Omani and Abu Dhabi standards and the GSO standards have similar values for most of the parameters, while the Kahrama’a standard included much lower values for many of the metals present. It is noted that a revised GSO for Unbottled Drinking Water was drafted in 2012 and water quality parameters should be reviewed once finalised.

It is also significant that both the Omani standard and the Abu Dhabi standards have been revised to permit a higher boron value of 2.4mg/L in line with the latest revision of the WHO Guidelines for Drinking- water Quality, where the boron standard has been revised from 1.0mg/L to 2.4mg/L. Boron has always been a problematic element for membrane desalination plants to remove because of its small particle size. This in turn has meant that most plants have needed a two stage reverse osmosis (RO) system (see Section 3.1.1) to achieve the boron standard. Adoption of the WHO’s 2011 revision would potentially mean that a single stage RO system should be sufficient to achieve the new boron standard, resulting in reduced capital and operating costs for RO treatment.

  • 2.3 Recommended Water Quality Standards for Bahrain

As EWA has adopted the Gulf Standards Organisation (GSO) for Unbottled Drinking Water (GS/149/2008), some parameters important for remineralisation and water palatability may not be monitored at their water desalination plants.

Discussions have been held with EWA and the water quality standards presented herein have been selected.

It should be noted that three levels of standard have been proposed. These are:

  • Desalination Plant Delivery Point – These standards should be applied for treatment plants discharging into the system.

  • Distribution Network – Operation Target – This is the target value that should be used for the operation of the distribution system.

  • Distribution Network – Allowed Limit – This would represent the limits of what is considered acceptable.

These have been based on the recommendations in the 2011 WHO Guidelines for Drinking-water Quality and existing limits from the IWPPs at Hidd and Al Dur. These limits take into consideration water supply technologies being used in Bahrain, including the standard disinfection process of chlorination for residual free chlorine. If disinfection methods are to change to chlorine dioxide or chloramination then limits would

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Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review need to be imposed for chlorate, chlorite,

need to be imposed for chlorate, chlorite, mono-chloramine, di-chloramine, and tri-chloramines. However, changing the disinfection process is not recommended in this report.

Table 2.2:

Key Water Quality Parameters (Maximum permitted values)

 

Desalination

Distribution Network

Plant Delivery

S. No

Parameters

Unit

Point

Operation Target

Allowed Limits

  • 1 Pt/Co scale

Colour

<1

<5

15

  • 2 NTU

Turbidity

<0.2

< 1

< 5

  • 3 Taste

Unobjectionable

Unobjectionable

Unobjectionable

  • 4 Odour

Unobjectionable

Unobjectionable

Unobjectionable

  • 5 OC

Temperature (max)

40

-

-

  • 6 pH value

pH

7.0-8.0

7.0-8.0

6.5-8.5

  • 7 mg/l

Total Dissolved Solids

100-300

100-500

100-1000

  • 8 μS/cm

Electrical Conductivity

200-500

200-900

200-1800

  • 9 mg/l as CaCO 3

Total Hardness (max)

250

500

500

  • 10 mg/l as Ca

Calcium (min)

25

25

25

  • 11 mg/l as Mg

Magnesium (max.)

5

10

30

  • 12 mg/l as CaCO 3

Alkalinity ( min)

70

70

50

  • 13 mg/l as Na

Sodium (max)

50

100

200

  • 14 mg/l as Cl

Chloride (max)

100

125

250

  • 15 mg/l as Al

Aluminium (max)

0.2

0.2

0.2

  • 16 mg/l as Fe

Iron (max)

0.1

0.2

0.2

  • 17 mg/l as Cu

Copper (max)

0.05

0.2

1.0

  • 18 mg/l as Zn

Zinc (max)

0.1

0.2

0.5

  • 19 mg/l as Mn

Manganese (max)

0.05

0.1

0.4

  • 20 mg/l as B

Boron (max)

1.0

1.5

2.0

  • 21 mg/l as Cl 2

Residual Chlorine

0.4-0.6

0.3-0.5

0.2-0.7

  • 22 µg BrO 3 /l

Bromate (max)

2

5

10

  • 23 Langelier Saturation Index

0.0 to +0.30

0.0 to +0.30

0.0 to +0.30

Total Organic Carbon

  • 24 mg/l

<0.5

<1.0

<1.0

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Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review Table 2.3: Additional Parameters (Maximum permitted values)

Table 2.3:

Additional Parameters (Maximum permitted values)

 

Desalination

Distribution Network

Plant Delivery

S. No

Parameters

Unit

Point

Operation Target

Allowed Limits

  • 25 mg SO 4 /l

Sulphate

50

50

50

  • 26 mg K/l

Potassium

10

10

10

  • 27 mg NO 3 /l

Nitrate

2

2

2

  • 28 mg NO 2 /l

Nitrite

0.1

0.1

0.1

  • 29 Ammonium (ammonia and ammonium ions)

mg NH 4 /l

0.5

0.5

0.5

  • 30 Dissolved or emulsified hydrocarbons; mineral oil

mg/l

0.01

0.01

0.01

  • 31 mg P/l

Phosphorus

2.2

2.2

2.2

  • 32 µg As/l

Arsenic

50

50

50

  • 33 µg Cd/l

Cadmium

5

5

5

  • 34 µg CN/l

Cyanides

50

50

50

  • 35 µg Cr/l

Chromium

50

50

50

  • 36 µg Hg/l

Mercury

1

1

1

  • 37 µg

Lead

Pb/l

10

10

10

  • 38 µg Sb/l

Antimony

5

5

5

  • 39 µg Se/l

Selenium

10

10

10

  • 40 µg Ba/l

Barium

700

700

700

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Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review Table 2.4: Organic Chemicals (Maximum permitted values)

Table 2.4:

Organic Chemicals (Maximum permitted values)

 

Desalination

Distribution Network

Plant Delivery

S. No

Parameters

Unit

Point

Operation Target

Allowed Limits

  • 41 µg/l

Endrine

0.2

0.2

0.2

  • 42 µg/l

Lindane

2

2

2

  • 43 µg/l

Methoxychlor

10

10

10

  • 44 2,4 dichlorophexy acetic acid

µg/l

10

10

10

  • 45 µg/l

2,4,5 trichlorophenoxy

10

10

10

propionic acid

  • 46 µg/l

Phenols

0.5

0.5

0.5

  • 47 µg/l

Heptachlor

0.03

0.03

0.03

  • 48 µg/l

Aldrin

0.03

0.03

0.03

  • 49 µg/l

DDT

2

2

2

  • 50 µg/l

Chlordane

0.2

0.2

0.2

  • 51 µg/l

Dieldrin

0.03

0.03

0.03

  • 52 µg/l

Heptachlor epoxide

0.03

0.03

0.03

  • 53 µg/l

Trichloroethene

10

10

10

  • 54 µg/l

Tetrachlormethane

3

3

3

  • 55 µg/l

Tetrachloroethene

10

10

10

  • 56 µg/l

Chloroform

10

10

10

  • 57 µg/l

Polycyclic aromatic

0.2

0.2

0.2

Hydrocarbons

  • 58 µg/l

Trihalomethanes

50

50

50

  • 59 µg/l

1,2 Dichloroethane

3

3

3

  • 60 µg/l

Benzene

1

1

1

  • 61 µg/l

Benzo (a) pyrene

0.01

0.01

0.01

  • 62 µg/l

Bromoform

30

30

30

  • 63 µg/l

Dichloromethane

5

5

5

  • 64 Bromodichloromethane

µg/l

10

10

10

  • 65 µg/l

Chlorobenzene

10

10

10

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Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review Table 2.5: Micro-biological Parameters (Maximum permitted values)

Table 2.5:

Micro-biological Parameters (Maximum permitted values)

 

Desalination

Distribution Network

Plant Delivery

S. No

Parameters

Unit

Point

Operation Target

Allowed Limits

  • 66 Total coliforms

Number/100 ml

0

0

0

  • 67 E. coli or thermotolerent Faecal coliform bacteria

Number/100 ml

0

0

0

  • 68 Number/100 ml

Enterococci

0

0

0

  • 69 Number/ ml at 22°C or 37°C

Total Bacterial Count

10 at 37°C

10 at 37°C

10 at 37°C

2.4 Summary

Bahrain currently adopts the Gulf Standards Organisation (GSO) Standard for Unbottled Drinking Water (GS/149/2008) which only contains a limited number of parameters compared to those adopted by other GCC states (Oman, Qatar and Abu Dhabi).

Various recommendations have been made as to proposed revisions to the water quality standards which were presented in revision A of this report. These have discussed with representatives from EWA. Following these discussions EWA provided a table setting out a new set of potable water quality standards that they prefer to work to. These have been compiled into Tables 2.2, Table 2.3, Table 2.4 and Table 2.5. These parameters have prepared based the standards included in the Hidd and Al Dur Power and Water Purchase Agreements and consideration of the World Health Organization Guidelines for Drinking-water Quality (Fourth Edition), standards adopted in other countries and existing practices at comparable treatment plants.

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  • 3 Revi ew of Des alinati on W ater Treat ment Tech nolog ies

Water i n Bahrain is derive d from tw o main so urces, na mely des alinated s ea water

and gro undwater . This se ction revi ews and

contrasts current tr eatment

technol ogies, inc luding me mbrane

and distill ation des alination,

as well as

alternat ive newe r process es on the market.

It is concl uded that Reverse Osmosis

is the m ost favou rable des alination treatment technolo gy for us

is reco mmended for future

producti on plants.

in Bahra in and it

  • 3.1 Membrane

Desalina tion

  • 3.1.1 Reverse O smosis

    • 3.1.1.1 Overview of Process

Reverse

osmosis (RO ) is a memb rane desalin ation proces s, where pr e-treated sea water is pu mped under

high pres sure (typical ly 60-70 bar) through a s emi-permea ble membra ne. The me mbrane stru cture is such

that wate r molecules

can pass thr ough the me mbrane whil e the salts w ithin the wa ter are exclu ded and

become c oncentrated into brine, w hich is then discharged to the sea.

Figure 3.1: Simplified Schematic of Reverse Osm osis (RO) Sy stem Source: D esalData
Figure 3.1:
Simplified Schematic of Reverse Osm osis (RO) Sy stem
Source:
D esalData

As can be

seen from t he above di agram, a nu mber of diffe rent chemic al dosing sy stems are re quired,

including pre-treatme nt, pre-condi tioning, mem brane clean ing and pos t-treatment.

The post-tre atment

processe s of reminer alisation and disinfection are commo n with all des alination tec hnologies a nd

discussed

in more det ail in Sectio n 4.

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Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review The treatment steps include: Pre-treatment  Chlorine

The treatment steps include:

Pre-treatment

  • Chlorine for biofouling control in raw water mains.

  • Coagulant for the removal of solids from the water (in conjunction with the media filter).

  • Dechlorination (sodium bisulfite). Dechlorination is necessary before the RO membranes as generally they are not chlorine resistant and will be damaged if exposed to excess chlorine.

Pre-conditioning:

  • Scale Inhibitor. Scale inhibitors are commonly used to prevent the precipitation of chemicals such as calcium carbonate or calcium sulphate on the membranes.

  • Acid / Alkali (not shown in the above schematic). Acid or alkali can be added prior to the RO system. Acid dosing (lowering the pH) will reduce the likelihood of scaling on the membranes, while alkali dosing (raising the pH) will change the nature of boron in the water so that it can more easily be removed.

Membrane cleaning:

  • Various chemicals are used for membrane cleaning, including acids, alkalis and detergents. The exact chemicals used depend on the nature of the fouling on the membranes. The cleaning sequence and chemicals used are then modified depending on the nature of the fouling.

Post-treatment

  • Remineralisation. Common with all desalination technologies, the desalinated water is very low in minerals which can result in it being corrosive to the materials in the water distribution system. Consequentially, it is necessary to remineralise the water.

  • Disinfection. As with remineralisation, all water treatment systems require a disinfection stage. This is commonly carried out using chlorine, but other disinfectants can be used.

Many of these processes are discussed further in Section 4.

3.1.1.2 Review

One of the major advantages of the RO desalination process is that it can be independently dispatched within its technical limits as there is no other coupling with the power plant than the electrical connection. In comparison, a thermal desalination processes are supplied with the low pressure steam and electricity.

The electric power consumption (and main component of the operating costs) is associated with pumping the water through the RO membranes. Various technologies have been developed, collectively referred to as Energy Recovery Devices (ERD) (not shown on the simplified diagram in Figure 3.1) which recovers some of this pumping energy from the water brine flow. There are a number of different types of ERD, the most common being Pelton Wheels, Turbo-Chargers and Pressure Exchangers. A Pelton Wheel is currently being used at the Al Dur desalination plant. Typically, turbo-chargers can achieve energy recovery efficiencies in the order of 70% depending on the size of the units.

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Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review One of the main challenges of applying

One of the main challenges of applying reverse osmosis treatment is the prevention of fouling of the reverse osmosis membranes themselves. In order to do this a number of pre-treatment steps are used. High levels of suspended solids can overload the plants resulting in fouling of the membranes and reduced plant throughput. This can particularly occur when algal blooms occur, as has been observed in the Arabian Gulf. There are, however, effective pre-treatment processes that have been adopted in the Gulf to successfully address this issue. Pre-treatment steps are discussed separately in Section 4.

Overall, there are many advantages to RO technology over other desalination processes. Most importantly, RO technology has lower CAPEX and lifecycle costs, can be upgraded in a modular fashion, and is not dependent on power demands. These advantages are discussed further in this report.

Summary

Reverse osmosis remains a well-developed and widely used desalination process, with numerous successful applications both in the Gulf and internationally. It is recommended as being a suitable technology for application in Bahrain.

  • 3.1.2 Brackish Water Reverse Osmosis (BWRO)

As discussed in Section 1.2, water in Bahrain is sourced from groundwater as well as the sea. The groundwater utilised for potable water supply is brackish and of variable water quality – both in terms of salinity and TDS, and hydrocarbon contamination (see Section 4). Brackish waters tend to have TDS in the range of 1,000 to 15,000mg/L. In comparison, the TDS of seawater is around 45,000mg/L.

Technologies for the treatment of brackish groundwater are very varied and depend on the nature of the groundwater and the water quality issues encountered, but the most common treatment is reverse osmosis.

Brackish water reverse osmosis (BWRO) systems will typically achieve recoveries, the amount of product water produced compared to the feedwater, in the order of 65-80%. This means that for every 1,000 m3 treated, between 650 and 800 m3 of potable water will be produced and between 200 to 350 m3 of brine water. In addition, since water with lower salinities are being treated, less pressure and hence less power is required than for sea water desalination using reverse osmosis.

  • 3.2 Thermal Desalination

    • 3.2.1 Multi-Effect Distillation (MED)

      • 3.2.1.1 Overview of Process

Multi-Effect Distillation (MED) is a thermal desalination process consisting of multiple stages (‘effects’) of the heating of seawater. Seawater (the “feedwater”) is introduced into all stages of the process with the product water (distillate) only being removed at the end of the treatment chain. The seawater is heated by

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direct con tact betwee n a heat exc hanger surfa ce and the i ncoming sea water. Stea m provides the initial

heating st age but is o nly introduce d at the first effect. The heating of s ubsequent e ffects is pro vided by the

vapour fro om the previ ous effects,

thereby itera tively reduci ng the energ y usage at e ach stage.

A Thermo Vapour Co mpressor (T VC) is often added to the

process in order to incr ease the am ount of

distillate p er unit stea m input and this process is termed M ED-TVC. F or the remai nder of the r eport, MED and MED -TVC will no t be different iated unless is specifical ly required.

The figure

below prov ides a sche matic overvie w of the ME D-TVC proc ess.

Figure 3.2:

Schematic Diagram of M ulti-Effect Dis tillation (MED -TVC) Proces s

Source: D esalData
Source:
D esalData
  • 3.2.1.2 Review

MED tech nology is ol der than RO and MSF te chnologies b ut the ‘curre nt version’ u sed in desal ination

facilities w as develop ed during the

late 1990s and early 20 00s. Since this time, m ore than half of all

thermal I WPP were c ontracted wit h MED. The largest ME D unit is in o peration in Y anbu, Saudi Arabia and

its name

plate capacit y is 15 MIG D.

The most critical oper ational para meter of the modern ME D desalinatio n is the top brine tempe rature which

is impose d by the alk aline scale.

Currently the MED shoul d not be ope rated beyon d 65 o C other wise scale

will form e asily. Ironic ally, this limi tation in the top brine te mperature le aves room fo r further imp rovement

in MED si nce the theo retical perfo rmance ratio

(PR) of ME D could be

up 23 while t he practical maximum

PR of MS F is not exc eeding 12~1 3. However , it should be

noted that t he design p erformance ratio is

similar to that of MSF at the mom ent.

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Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review MED has a lower electrical energy consumption

MED has a lower electrical energy consumption compared to other desalination processes, thereby offering financial savings and a lower environmental impact. It is, however, dependent upon the availability of steam from power processes.

The chemical demands of MED desalination are low, with minimal pre-treatment being required.

Variations in seawater conditions can therefore be tolerated. There is a risk of scale formation on the heat exchanger surface which is managed by limiting the top brine temperature at the first effect and the addition of anti-scalants and by ensuring a sufficient flow of seawater to fully wet the heat exchanger.

Thermal desalination plants are reliable and subject to few outage or maintenance issues, but it should be noted that outages can occur more frequently towards the end of their asset lives.

In Bahrain the MED process is used at the Hidd IWPP site along with Multi-Stage Flash (MSF), with the MED plant reported to be more efficient (see Section 5). The demand on the power plant has a significant control on the water production facility, which is considered to be a limitation of thermal desalination facilities. MED is also used in Bahrain at the Alba Coke Plant.

Summary

MED is one of the oldest and most widely-used desalination technologies, with a long history in Bahrain. MED offers a reliable, high quality treatment method with low chemical usage but high energy demand. It should continue to be considered for selection in future desalination developments but with an awareness of the limitations and challenges that are apparent with such energy-intensive and dependent desalination processes.

  • 3.2.2 Multi-Stage Flash (MSF)

    • 3.2.2.1 Overview of Process

MSF is another widely used thermal distillation desalination process. In contrast to MED, ‘feedwater’ is only introduced into the last stage of the process, having been de-aerated. Product water (distillate) is again only removed at the end of the treatment process. The brine is “flashed” between each stage through an orifice causing vapour to be produced. This vapour is condensed onto the condenser section of the stage, in-turn heating the recycling brine. The condensate is collected and cascaded through all the stages and removed via the product water pump from the last stage.

The figure below provides a schematic overview of the Multi Stage Flash (MSF) process.

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Figure 3.3:

Schematic Diagram of M SF Process

Source: D esalData
Source:
D esalData
  • 3.2.2.2 Review

MSF was first installe d in Kuwait i n 1975/6 an d has a long history in th e Gulf. It is a mature tech nology with

well-esta blished scale and corrosi on controls. The operatio nal limit of t he MSF is im

posed by th e sulphate

scale whi ch is very dif ficult to rem ove once for med. Curre ntly, the top brine tempe rature and th e maximum

TDS at th e outlet of th e brine heat er is 120 o C and 67,000~ 68,000ppm respectively . It is unlikely

these two

major ope rational par ameters will be improved

in next 15 y ears. Howe ver, it is note d that manu facturers

are trying to minimize energy cons umption by optimizing th e tube lengt h and diame ters which r esult in a

significan t reduction i n the specific

power cons umption fro m 4.5kWh/m 3 to 3.3kWh /m3. The lar gest MSF

unit is un der construc tion in Saudi Arabia with a name plat e capacity o f 20 MIGD.

The perfo rmance ratio distillate i s produced

(PR) is the efficiency in dex of the th ermal desal ination whic h shows how

much

with a unit (2 ,326kJ) hea t input. Histo rically the P R of MSF wa s in the ran ge of 8 to 10

dependin g on the leve l of optimiza tion in term s of steam c onsumption

and the cost of material

and fuel.

MSF is a highly energ y intensive p rocess. MS F plants are consequent ially often p aired with po wer plants, reducing the combine d energy req uirements b y a half to a third. This a dds a depe ndency on th e power productio n, however, which can b e problemati c.

The MSF process is u sed at Sitra and Hidd in Bahrain. Th e Sitra plant is consider ed old and conseque ntially susce ptible to out ages due to tube failures . It is noted at the Hidd IWPP where technolog ies are in op eration, that the MSF un its require le ss maintena nce than th e MED units .

both

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Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review Summary MSF should continue to be considered

Summary

MSF should continue to be considered for selection in future desalination developments but with an awareness of the limitations and challenges that are apparent, in particular in relation to the energy demands and dependencies of thermal desalination processes.

  • 3.3 Alternative Desalination Technologies

There are a large number of alternative desalination technologies that are available or are under development. So far these technologies have not yet achieved large scale commercial operation.

The most commonly discussed technologies are:

  • Forward Osmosis

  • Membrane Distillation

  • Capacitive Desalination

These technologies are briefly reviewed in the following sections.

Forward Osmosis

Forward osmosis is similar to reverse osmosis in that water flows across a semi-permeable membrane which excludes the salts. Under reverse osmosis the driving force for the process is provided by hydraulic pressure. Under forward osmosis the water is effectively “sucked” through the membrane by having a “saltier” solution, known as draw-solution, on the other side.

The chemicals used to make up the “saltier” solution can be carefully selected so that the water can more easily be separated from the draw solution.

Various chemicals have been investigated with different properties. In essence the chemicals may become gases or solids and hence can be easily separated from the water, or the solution can be more easily treated using conventional reverse osmosis because the membranes are less prone to fouling and so can be operated at higher rates or higher recovery percentages.

Forward osmosis has not reached full scale commercialization stage yet and is therefore not recommended for future development in Bahrain at the present time.

Membrane Distillation

Membrane distillation is similar to thermal desalination technologies in that the seawater is heated and then the water vapour that is produced is condensed back into water. Under membrane distillation a membrane is used to separate warm water from cold water which is permeable to water vapour but is impermeable to liquid water. The water vapour can therefore diffuse across the membrane, leaving the salts beyond in the seawater stream, producing pure water on the other side of the membrane.

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Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review A number of pilot scale membrane distillations,

A number of pilot scale membrane distillations, using various membranes and configurations, have been trialled but so far these have not demonstrated commercial application.

As such, it is not recommended that membrane distillation is adopted by Bahrain at this stage.

Capacitive Desalination

Various types of electrically driven desalination technologies have been developed.

Under capacitive desalination the water is passed through electrodes which attract and absorb the cations (positive ions such as Na+) and the anions (negative ions such as Cl-) and produces a stream of purer water. After a time, the charges on the electrodes are reversed and the absorbed ions are released to produce a high salt wastewater stream.

This technology is non-pressure, non-membrane desalination process and is more applicable to brackish water. It remains under development and is currently at the lab scale/R&D phase.

For these reasons, capacitive desalination is not recommended for treatment plants in Bahrain.

Summary

It is not recommended that any of these newer, alternative, technologies are adopted in Bahrain during this planning horizon to 2030, as they have not yet achieved large scale commercial operation or are not appropriate for large-scale desalination treatment.

  • 3.4 Combination of Technologies

Some new combined power and water plants in the Gulf region (UAE and Qatar) are opting for a combination of MED and RO processes. This takes advantage of lower temperature-operated MED processes coupled with a power plant heat recovery steam generator.

Such combined plants can be more efficient in terms of power consumption compared to stand alone power and desalination plants (including RO) and they do provide the versatility of having different desalination technologies. However, they need to be finely tuned to ensure all three plants (power, MED and RO) are operating as efficiently as possible. This would require increased monitoring and control from operations staff.

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Figure 3.4:

Schematic Diagram of C ombined ME D-RO Proces s

Source: M ahbub et al. 20 09
Source:
M ahbub et al. 20 09
  • 3.5 Comparis on of Desa lination T echnologi es

Thermal

desalination

plants have a long stan ding history in Bahrain

and familiari ty with the t echnology is

quite stro ng.

 

The new Al Dur powe r and RO pl ant is demo nstrating tha t RO desali nation is a te chnically fe asible option for Bahra in. A valid c oncern is le ss flexibility for source w ater contam ination risks such as hig h TDS, algal

blooms o r oil spills.

These risk s are addre ssed at

the

pre-treatm ent stage a nd can be

mitigated by

ensuring future RO p lants have r obust specif ications to a llow for all risks.

possible sou rce water c ontamination

As a resu lt of the low er energy co nsumption a nd the incre asing cost o f oil, reverse

osmosis is increasingl y

being sel ected as the

preferred d esalination

technology

over thermal

desalinatio n.

Further,

a noticeable

issue of c ombined wa ter power pl ants (CWPP ) with therm al desalinati on is the de pendency o f the thermal

desalinati on plant on steam supp ly from the p ower plant.

The chang ing demand

pattern of p ower affects

the steam

supply to

the thermal

desalination

units. As

a result, du ring periods

of low pow er demand,

steam rai sed directly from fuel fire d boilers lea ds to an incr ease in des alinated wat er costs.

Reverse

osmosis and

thermal (M ED and MS F) desalinat ion process es have bee n compared

in terms of

their ener gy use, che mical consu mption and a dvantages/d isadvantage s in the follo wing section s.

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Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster

Water Treatment Review

Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review 3.5.1.1 Energy Use The thermal (distillation) desalination

3.5.1.1

Energy Use

The thermal (distillation) desalination technologies, particularly MSF, have a long track record of successful commercial operation in the Middle East. However, thermal desalination requires considerably more energy than reverse osmosis (membrane) desalination. A comparison of the energy requirements of different technologies is presented in the table below.

Table 3.1:

Comparison of energy requirements between RO and thermal desalination (MED/MSF)

Energy

RO

MSF

MED

Performance ratio (kg of distillate per 2326 kJ)

-

9

9

Thermal energy (MJ/m 3 )

-

258

258

 

Elec. Equiv. (kWh/m 3 )*

-

24

24

Electrical (kWh/m 3 )

4.0

3.5

1.2

Total (kWh/m 3 )

4.0

27.5

25.2

*Electricity that could be generated if the desalination plant was not operating, at 33% of steam turbine efficiency

 

As can be seen from the above table, seawater reverse osmosis typically requires approximately a sixth as much energy as thermal desalination processes. This could have significant implications for cost if the fuel price is high.

3.5.1.2

Chemical Consumption

A comparison of the chemical consumption for each process is made in Table 3.2. RO treatment requires the use of more chemicals, especially for pre-treatment, whereas the MED and MSF processes require significantly less quantities of chemicals per m 3 of produced water.

Table 3.2:

Comparison of chemical consumption between RO and thermal desalination (MED/MSF)

 

Chemical consumption per m 3 of desalinated water produced (g/m 3 )

 

Chemical

Description

RO

MSF

MED

Anti-scalant

All Desalination processes

2.92

4.4

11.6

Anti-foam

Thermal Desalination processes

0.7

0.4

Sodium Sulphite

Thermal Desalination processes

3.5

0.4

Tri-sodium phosphate

MED process

-

0.3

Sulphuric acid

Seawater conditioning

65

Caustic soda

Boron removal

23

Ferric chloride

DAF coagulant

75

Coagulant aid (Nalco)

DAF coagulant aid

0.8

Polymer (sludge treatment)

DAF sludge treatment

0.4

Sodium meta bisulfite

RO module protection

0.3

Citric acid

RO module cleaning

2.8

Source:

MML

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Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review 3.5.1.3 Advantages and Disadvantages A holistic comparison
  • 3.5.1.3 Advantages and Disadvantages

A holistic comparison of the three technologies is made in Table 3.3.

Table 3.3:

Comparison of RO, MSF and MED processes

Area RO MSF MED
Area
RO
MSF
MED

Process

Membrane separation using mechanical pressure differentials.

Multi-stage flashing of sea water in flash chamber.

Multi-effect distillation of steam on tube surface.

CAPEX

Moderately high

High

High

Total electrical power consumption

Moderate to high (depending up on raw water TDS)

Medium

Low

Heat energy

Not required

Typically 260 kJ/kg of distillate

Typically 260 kJ/kg of distillate

Chemical consumption

High

Moderate

Moderate

Sea water oil contamination

Very sensitive

Good

Good

Sea water algal bloom

Good, subject to design of pre-treatment process

Good

Good

Maintenance requirements

Moderate throughout life of RO subject to pre-treatment operation.

Good for majority of desalination unit life.

Good for majority of desalination unit life.

Operational flexibility

Plant is standalone; production capacity is not dependant on power plant operation.

Capacity subject to availability of steam from power generation. Operation of auxiliary boilers is sometimes required.

Capacity subject to availability of steam from power generation. Operation of auxiliary boilers is sometimes required.

Expansion and upgrade

Expansion is modular. To upgrade, modules, racks, pumps can be replaced as required.

Thermal desalination unit cannot be expanded.

Thermal desalination unit cannot be expanded or partially upgraded.

Environmental impact

Concentrated Brine

Thermal Pollution

Thermal Pollution

Operational issues

Membrane Fouling

Tube degradation

Heat Exchanger Scaling

Product to seawater intake ratio

35-40%

12.5%

12.5%

Product water quality (mg/L TDS)

100 - 500

<25

<25

Source:

MML

Table 3.3 provides a general comparison of various factors associated with the operation of each technology. Although RO requires more chemicals, the difference in energy requirement makes RO cheaper at producing desalinated water.

The MSF and MED processes rely on a steam supply from the power plant. The power output reduces at times of decreasing demand. Auxiliary boilers can be brought online to supplement the steam supply to

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Kingdom of BahrainElectricity and Water AuthorityMaster Water Treatment Review the thermal desalination units at these times.

the thermal desalination units at these times.