Innovations in Ion Exchange Technology for the Removal of Sulfate
By David Kratochvil, Ph.D., Brad Marchant, Michael Bratty, and Rick Lawrence, Ph.D.
In response to rising concerns about the effect of sulfate on water quality, human health, and agriculture, many jurisdictions around the world are imposing tighter regulations for sulfate discharge. This is driving the need for environmental compliance in industries like mining, metal processing, pulp and paper, sewage treatment, and chemical manufacturing. Technologies to treat sulfate include reverse osmosis (RO), processes based on ettringite formation, biological sulfate reduction, and precipitation with barium. Typically these technologies have one or more technical and economic limitations. This article will profile this new ion-exchange (IX) technology that can produce partially deionized water that meets new sulfate regulations, and has a saleable gypsum product. The article also includes two case studies with examples of commercial applications.
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