Floating desalination vessel nearing first commercial roll out

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Water company Hyflux used the Singapore International Water Week to showcase a model of its floating desalination production vessel, known as a FDPV.

With a capacity of 30,000 m3/day and at a length of 112.5m, the vessel has been designed for “humanitarian organisations or communities which require a clean supply of water urgently”.

Hyflux’s Kristal ultrafiltration (UF) membranes would be used for the on-board pre-treatment to help remove microorganisms and bacteria.

Electrical power would be provided from multiple generators installed on the vessel, with an energy recovery system also planned to be included.

There are then two reverse osmosis (RO) passes for the treatment of permeate from the UF. Once treated, water is stored in the product water tank before use.

With increasing discharge limits for wastewater and tighter planning obstacles, there is a growing trend for the development of off-shore treatment.

In April Bloomberg reported that Israeli company IDE Technologies was also in talks with Japanese shipbuilders and the government to design off-shore desalination plants.

The April-May edition of Water & Wastewater International (WWi) reported how the Norwegian company EnviroNor is developing a floating wastewater treatment vessel using old oil tankers (read WWi article).

Industry analysts Frost & Sullivan predicted the mobile water treatment market to generate revenues of $895 million by 2016 (read WWi article).

Speaking to WWi, Roland Ang, managing director, business development, said: “The Hyflux floating desalination vessel is a one-stop desalination mobile unit. It’s 30,000 m3/day at top capacity. It’s a whole process on board that includes RO/UF, including water storage.”

Ang suggested the first full scale FDPV could be rolled out in as little as six months, with the first deployment likely in the Middle East.

In the company’s corporate brochure on the FDPV, Hyflux suggested the floating vessel would be well placed to provide water in emergency situations.

It said: “Over the years, rapid climate change and the increase in occurrences of natural disasters globally have posed challenges for humanitarian organisations to provide a secure and clean supply of water to victims quickly.”

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