“Gypsum scaling in membrane distillation: Impacts of temperature and vapor flux” published in Desalination selected as VINSE spotlight publication
About the author: Kofi Christie was a PhD student under the direction of Dr. Shihong Lin. Christie is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Louisiana State University. His research focuses on interdisciplinary approaches to improve sustainability at the water-energy nexus. His research interests include 1) elucidating the complex thermodynamic stabilities of highly saline wastewater solutions, 2) designing and fabricating novel membrane materials and processes for resource recovery, and 3) process optimization for membrane-based liquid separations.
In the featured publication, Christie and co-authors used a novel flux and temperature deconvolution approach to carefully analyze the bulk and interfacial conditions at the “critical recovery” point of gypsum scaling in membrane distillation. It was observed that the energy barrier for nucleation is highly sensitive to operating conditions selected for separation, even beyond conditions of supersaturation. These findings help to inform the design and implementation of scaling mitigation approaches for industrial applications.