Dow outlines growth plans

The unit’s recent developments include a new manufacturing facility for DOW FILMTEC™ reverse osmosis (RO) elements in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and a water application development centre in Tarragona, Spain.

“[These] are clear examples of the continuing investment Dow is making in reverse osmosis technology and production capacity to meet the growing challenges for a clean, affordable and available water supply,” said Dow Water & Process Solutions general manager Ian Barbour.

The technology development centre is designed to accelerate the commercialisation of Dow technologies that focus on clean water production. According to the company, the centre is located to support customers in the region and provides access to the wide variety of water sources, including industrial and municipal wastewater and seawater, to support product development and performance testing in real world conditions. Engineers at the centre are working on ways to reduce the energy needed to remove salt from seawater to as little as 2 kilowatt-hours per m3.

Dow has also improved its Filmtec RO membrane elements, which, in combination with DOW Ultrafiltration pre-treatment, can provide an increase in the amount of treated water per element while reducing energy costs by about 50% over time. This can help developed nations operate their water infrastructure more efficiently, and lowers the barrier for the adoption of the most efficient water purification technologies in rapidly developing economies. As a result, the desalination and demineralisation water treatment systems that use Dow’s enabling components produce hundreds of millions of gallons of freshwater per day.

Other improvements include Dow’s upgrading of its ROSA (reverse osmosis system analysis) design software, adding DOW ultrafiltration water types, and new products launched in past two years, including 16 inch elements and the highest performing low energy high rejection FILMTEC elements (HRLE-440i and XFRLE-400/34i). The software also has improved pH models for BW elements, which reflect more accurate pH dependence, and improved compatibility with Windows® 7, both 32- and 64-bit platforms.

DW&PS is also introducing DOW Pack, a modular ultrafiltration (UF) skid design that consists of several standardised designs that can be combined to match any water flowrate; and the DOW FILMTEC HRLE-440i element which rejects 99.5% of sodium chloride, at one-third lower pressure than standard brackish water membranes.