Improve the sustainability of seawater desalination


More than 40% of the global population is affected by water scarcity and water demand is expected to grow 50% by 2030. Since 97,5 of the world’s water is saline sustainable desalination holds great promise and can create a major impact.

Keywords: Desalination; brine disposal; chemicals; energy optimization; reverse osmosis; biotechnology; polymer; microbiology

Focus area: Reverse osmosis is one of the most common ways to desalinate seawater and is expected to account for approximately 80% of future seawater desalination. However, reverse osmosis desalination plants are costly to build, costly to operate, and the brine waste product is creating ecological challenges near production sites.

Water is the key to a prosperous future. Sustainable Development Goal 6 is about ensuring availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all. This particular challenge focuses on sustainable management of clean water.

Lack of clean water is the greatest social and economic challenge of our future. The world is not on track to achieve the Sustainable Development Targets for water by 2030. The time to act is now.
Many promising ideas never get the chance to become reality. HelloScience’s ambition is to fill the gap between idea and solution by offering access to immediate resources needed to succeed.
HelloScience offers access to Novozymes & Grundfos that connects, supports and co-develop with people on the platform. The purpose is to find new solutions to the biggest challenges facing us today. Both companies are purpose driven, insisting to find and deliver sustainable answers and solutions to the world’s needs.

Challenge: We challenge you to come up with more sustainable and effective reverse osmosis solutions as well as alternative ways of desalinating seawater.

In your solution, you should consider one or several of the following aspects:

  • Can the energy consumption be reduced?
  • Can we use biotech for smarter systems?
    Can we find better uses for the waste product of desalination?
  • Are there pre-treatment technologies available that can improve the entire process

Consider visiting before the challenge to get inspired by others. After the Oi-X challenge, we of course welcome all ideas to evovle on the HelloScience platform through interation with experts and access to  useful resources.