Ion Exchangers How to Optimize Brine Treatment at a Chloralkali Facility?

Source: Press release

Lanxess’ Lewatit MDS TP 208 monodisperse ion exchanger is currently being used for efficient brine treatment at Coogee Chemicals’ chloralkali facility in Australia. The ion exchanger helps to remove impurities, cut down on wastewater, chemicals and also reduces costs due to its longer service life.

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Chloralkali production at the Coogee Chemicals site in Lytton, Australia. The ion exchange columns are filled with Lewatit MDS TP 208 finely dispersed resin, which protects the sensitive electrolysis membranes by reliably removing impurities such as hardeners and barium.
Chloralkali production at the Coogee Chemicals site in Lytton, Australia. The ion exchange columns are filled with Lewatit MDS TP 208 finely dispersed resin, which protects the sensitive electrolysis membranes by reliably removing impurities such as hardeners and barium.
(Source: Coogee Chemicals)

Cologne/Germany – The Lewatit MDS TP 208 monodisperse ion exchanger from Lanxess is opening up a new approach to a simplified and sustainable sodium chloride brine purification. In Australia, the ion exchanger has been demonstrating its capabilities for half a decade at chlor-alkali producing firm Coogee Chemicals. It is capable of absorbing a lot more impurities than its MonoPlus equivalent, which means regeneration does not need to take place as often. The monodisperse ion exchanger makes it possible to cut costs significantly owing to longer cycle times. The process produces less waste and rinse water, which makes it easier to operate a system for chloralkali production. The highly efficient ion exchanger can be relied upon to help meet stringent purity standards, states the company.

Coogee Chemicals is one of Australia's largest chloralkali producers and operates three production facilities ‘down under’, all of which work successfully with ion exchange resins from Lewatit. The company's Lytton site in a suburb of Brisbane has gained an additional state-of-the-art cell room to cover demand for products such as sodium hydroxide, sodium hypochlorite and hydrochloric acid for the chemical industry, water treatment, mining and swimming pool industry. The greenfield project was designed to ensure that the strict regulatory requirements regarding waste reduction could be met reliably, ultimately leading to savings on operational waste and sewage disposal costs.

The amount of waste produced by brine production per year in Lytton is a total of 4,200 m³ lower than in a facility, which uses ion exchange resins with standard particle sizes. That means that the process is helping to conserve precious water resources at the same time. This successful outcome is based on the use of the new Lewatit MDS TP 208 finely dispersed resin, which protects the sensitive electrolysis membranes by reliably removing impurities such as hardness and barium. Since the facility was commissioned in July 2016, it has not only systematically complied with all specifications for brine purity required by membrane manufacturers but also, in some cases, even surpassed them, further boosting the efficiency of the facility in the process, adds the firm.

Average impurity level after secondary brine purification with Lewatit MDS TP 208 over a period of five years. Primary (pink) and tertiary (red) hardness and tertiary barium (black) and strontium (gray) effluent concentration. Operating conditions: [Ca2+, Mg2+]: 2.5 mg/l, [Ba2+]: 0.3 mg/l, [Sr2+]: 0.5 mg/l, [NaCl]: 310 g/l, pH: 9, temp: 65°C, SV: 7 BV/h.
Average impurity level after secondary brine purification with Lewatit MDS TP 208 over a period of five years. Primary (pink) and tertiary (red) hardness and tertiary barium (black) and strontium (gray) effluent concentration. Operating conditions: [Ca2+, Mg2+]: 2.5 mg/l, [Ba2+]: 0.3 mg/l, [Sr2+]: 0.5 mg/l, [NaCl]: 310 g/l, pH: 9, temp: 65°C, SV: 7 BV/h.
(Source: Lanxess)

With the revision of industry standards, the original targets of <300 ug for brine impurities have been cut to less than 100 μg for barium and strontium. By this the Lewatit MDS TP 208 is giving greater protection to the electrolysis membranes and enables a more energy-efficient operation, mentions the company. Moreover, the pressure loss in the columns of 0.4 bar has remained constant over the entire operational period, changing only when the flow rates are altered.

Since the monodisperse ion exchanger has been adopted into the Chloralkali production process in Lytton, more than five years ago, it has been delivering excellent performance ever since. Because the ion exchange columns are designed for a larger brine capacity, the facility is still capable of extending its treatment volume working with Lewatit MDS TP 208 to reach its full potential.

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