Ion-exchange regeneration efficiency and life cycle environmental impacts

Treavor Boyer, Gabriel Maul, Qiong Zhang, Youngwoon Kim

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

The regeneration efficiency, cost, life cycle impacts, and disposal implications of ion exchange (IX) regeneration using NaCl, NaHCO3, KCl, and KHCO3 salts were compared. In regeneration jar tests, chloride regeneration efficiency was higher for polystyrene anion exchange resin, while bicarbonate regeneration efficiency was higher for polyacrylic anion exchange resin. Potassium regeneration efficiency was higher than sodium regeneration efficiency for all cation exchange resins tested. NaHCO3 and KCl are approximately 5 to 10 times more expensive than NaCl, and NaHCO3 and KCl generally had higher environmental impacts than NaCl depending on the impact category. However, there are potential benefits of NaHCO3 and KCl over NaCl in terms of disposal that may offset the higher costs and life cycle impacts. NaHCO3 regenerant could offset costs used to address high corrosion potential in distribution systems and household plumbing, chronically acidified receiving waters, and wastewater nitrification limited by low alkalinity. KCl regenerant could offset costs for agricultural potassium inputs at a lower required dilution than NaCl based on impacts to hydraulic conductivity and plant nutrient requirements. KHCO 3 is not recommended as an IX regenerant due to its cost, which is ∼25 times higher than NaCl, high environmental impacts, and no further benefits over NaHCO3 or KCl in terms of disposal.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication2013 Water Quality Technology Conference and Exposition, WQTC 2013
StatePublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes
Event2013 Water Quality Technology Conference and Exposition, WQTC 2013 - Long Beach, CA, United States
Duration: Nov 3 2013Nov 7 2013

Other

Other2013 Water Quality Technology Conference and Exposition, WQTC 2013
CountryUnited States
CityLong Beach, CA
Period11/3/1311/7/13

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Water Science and Technology

Cite this

Boyer, T., Maul, G., Zhang, Q., & Kim, Y. (2013). Ion-exchange regeneration efficiency and life cycle environmental impacts. In 2013 Water Quality Technology Conference and Exposition, WQTC 2013