Turning desalination waste into a useful resource
Process developed at MIT could turn concentrated brine into useful chemicals, making desalination more efficient.


David L. Chandler | MIT News Office 
February 13, 2019
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The rapidly growing desalination industry produces water for drinking and for agriculture in the world’s arid coastal regions. But it leaves behind as a waste product a lot of highly concentrated brine, which is usually disposed of by dumping it back into the sea, a process that requires costly pumping systems and that must be managed carefully to prevent damage to marine ecosystems. Now, engineers at MIT say they have found a better way.

In a new study, they show that through a fairly simple process the waste material can be converted into useful chemicals — including ones that can make the desalination process itself more efficient.

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