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Reverse Electrodialysis Alternative Power Production

Period: October 2010 till September 2014
Status: Completed

Institute  Top 
  • Vlaamse overheid; Beleidsdomein Economie, Wetenschap en Innovatie; Vlaamse Instelling voor Technologisch Onderzoek (VITO), more

The project is focusing on the salinity gradient power reverse electro-dialysis (SGP-RE) process. It has been shown in scientific papers that the performance of the process can be increased by an order of magnitude when brine and sea or brackish water are used for the creation of the salinity gradient rather than the current approach of seawater with fresh water. The overall potential is very high and the REAPower project aims to enable the SGP-RE technology to play an important role in the energy mix of the next decades, contributing to the major objectives of energy policy for sustainability, security of supply and competitiveness.The following specific scientific and technological objectives are expected to be achieved within the life-time of the project:(i) Create materials and components tailored to the requirements of the process, including the membranes, spacers, electrodes and electrolyte.(ii) Optimise the design of the SGP-RE cell pairs and stack using a computer modelling tool developed for that purpose(iii) Verify the model, and assess the developed materials, components and design through tests on laboratory stacks.(iv) Evaluate and improve the performance of the overall system through tests on a prototype fed with real brine from a salt pond(v) Evaluate the results, analyse the economics, assess the environmental impacts and define the next necessary R&D activities for further development of the technology.The REAPower project explores a new path that has been so far only theoretically analysed. A highly innovative novel technology will be applied that overcomes the limitations of the current approach. The multidisciplinary consortium brings together key players from the industry and the academic world to work across traditional boundaries. The development of the new materials and components will contribute to the establishment of a strong scientific and technical base for European science and technology in this emerging area of energy research.

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