All membrane systems experience a deterioration in performance from time to time. Typical problems that you might see include;
- a drop in rejection,
- higher transmembrane pressure,
- high pressure drop in a module,
- a decrease in product volume or
- an increasing frequency of cleaning.
A membrane autopsy can be a vital tool in identifying the causes of these problems. Additionally you may also want to consider conducting an autopsy at the end of a series of membrane trials, to study the long term effects of your cleaning process or in the event of a system incident of event.
A membrane autopsy typically involves the removal or one or more membrane modules from your system which then undergoes a series of destructive testing. Testing is conducted on both the membrane material and also any fouling material that is removed from the surface, with the ultimate aim of the process to determine the root cause of the fouling or membrane failure and to provide actionable recommendations to correct to manage it.
Autopsy Analytical Services include
- Visual Inspection of internal and external membrane components
- Inorganic characterisation of fouling deposits
- Organic Characterisation
- Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) with energy dispersive x-ray analysis
- Oxidative or Halide membrane damage via Fujiwara testing
- Fourier transform infrared spectrometry (FTIR)
- X-Ray Diffraction (XRD)
- Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM)