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Nature. 2012 Aug 16;488(7411):313-9. doi: 10.1038/nature11477.

Membrane-based processes for sustainable power generation using water.

Author information

1
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pennsylvania 16802, USA. blogan@psu.edu

Abstract

Water has always been crucial to combustion and hydroelectric processes, but it could become the source of power in membrane-based systems that capture energy from natural and waste waters. Two processes are emerging as sustainable methods for capturing energy from sea water: pressure-retarded osmosis and reverse electrodialysis. These processes can also capture energy from waste heat by generating artificial salinity gradients using synthetic solutions, such as thermolytic salts. A further source of energy comes from organic matter in waste waters, which can be harnessed using microbial fuel-cell technology, allowing both wastewater treatment and power production.

PMID:
22895336
DOI:
10.1038/nature11477
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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