One of the grand challenges to sustain the modern society is to develop low-energy solutions for low-costwater production, preferably based on renewable source of energy. The IDEA project aims to address the aforementioned challenge and will focus on the process intensification of the desalination process by further developing and introducing in the desalination process highly innovative membranes augmented by the innovative process design to develop (a) Nanofiltration membrane (NF) unit replacing the traditional reverse
osmosis (RO) units and (b) a membrane distillation/membrane crystallization (MD/MCr) unit. One lab-scale proof of concept unit will be constructed and optimized to demonstrate the merit of the aforementioned process intensification One of the main objectives of IDEA is to reduce the carbon footprint and increase the economic and social well-being at regional level (the Mediterranean) while, developing methodologies to manage risks associated with water supply and sanitation and/or cross-boundary water management issues. Thus, IDEA aims to develop, install in Northern Africa and demonstrate the next-generation renewable powered integrated membrane systems lab scale, demonstrating and disseminating the novel technologies to reduce the high energy demands of the established Reverse Osmosis (RO) technology. The main target is to reduce the current cost of 2 euro per cubic meter for solar powered desalination by 40% in order to meet the drinking and irrigation water demands in Northern Africa and Middle East, and strengthen competitiveness of the European water sector.
NCSRD is the coordinator of the project and participants are the IEM-CNRS (France), CNR-ITM (Italy), National Research Centre – Gyza (Egypt), University of Jordan and Hassiba Benbouali University of Chlef (Algeria)