Ultrafiltration in Aqueous Cleaner Baths

Ultrafiltration in Aqueous Cleaner Baths


Ultrafiltration membranes provide an efficient, compact way to treat industrial wastewater to make it pure enough for a variety of applications. Water is treated to meet stringent discharge regulations and is often clean enough for reuse within the factory, a safe, economical alternative to disposal. Ultrafiltration technology is also successful in the treatment, recovery, and recycling of aqueous cleaner baths used in industrial environments. Ultrafiltration membrane systems are well suited for concentrating and removing the oils, greases, and solids that bind to and contaminate the aqueous bath used in heavy duty applications.

The Challenge

Provide a cost-effective method of extending the life of aqueous cleaner baths used in industrial wastewater treatment.

The Solution

Treating aqueous cleaner baths with membrane technology significantly increases bath life and reduces waste and chemical usage costs. Bath quality and the resulting production yields remain consistently high.

True solutions, i.e. aqueous cleaner, will not be retained by an ultrafiltration membrane and so will be the same concentration on both sides of the membrane. Surfactants, emulsifiers, and detergents are of low enough molecular weight to pass freely through a ultrafiltration membrane. Waste components are non-dissolved and will be retained by the ultrafiltration membrane.

Tubular ultrafiltration membranes have an open channel configuration capable of handling extremely high suspended loads. They are well-suited for applications in heavy industrial wastes including oily wastewaters.

FEG PLUS tubular membranes are designed to optimize performance in terms of cleanability, energy efficiency, and maximum solids concentrate. This membrane is capable of repeatedly concentrating oils, greases, and solids to concentrations as high as 60% while producing clear stable permeate that is recycled to the bath.

Maximizing Product Yield

The FEG PLUS ultrafiltration membrane acts as a kidney on aqueous cleaner baths. As parts are cleaned, the dirt and oils removed remain in the bath with the cleaner. These contaminants are bound in a chemically stable form — an ideal feed for tangential flow membrane separation. As the contaminated bath is fed to the ultrafiltration system, the system retains and concentrates the oil emulsion, dirt, and suspended solids, taking them out and away from the bath. Permeate, essentially purified cleaner bath at the same temperature and containing valuable chemicals, is returned to the bath.

Membrane System in Kidney Operation