Innovative Water Desalination System for Small Communities

EPA Contract Number: EPD17038
Title: Innovative Water Desalination System for Small Communities
Investigators: Srinivas, Girish
Small Business: TDA Research Inc.
EPA Contact: Manager, SBIR Program
Phase: I
Project Period: September 1, 2017 through February 28, 2018
Project Amount: $100,000
RFA: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) - Phase I (2017) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) , SBIR - Water


In many parts of the country groundwater withdrawals exceed recharge rates and this has caused groundwater-level declines, reductions to the volume of groundwater in storage, lower streamflow and lake levels. Development of brackish groundwater and seawater as an alternative water sources can help address concerns about the future availability of water. Thus, there is a need for a technology that produces high yields of clean water that: 1) can desalinate brackish water (which is actually plentiful throughout the US) and seawater, 2) has a low operating cost, 3) that is scalable from producing up to 1,000,000 gallons per day of potable the can meet the need of small communities.

To address this problem, TDA will develop thermally regenerable sorbents. The advantages of thermally regenerable sorbents are: 1) they do not require high pressures (like reverse osmosis (RO)), 2) no additional chemicals are needed for regeneration (unlike conventional ion exchange), and 3) they require much less energy than distillation because the sorbent removes soluble ions (the minor components), rather separating the major component (water). In this project we propose to make new, more robust resins, specifically for thermal desalination and thereby develop a process that is less expensive than RO.

Progress and Final Reports:

  • Final Report