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Japan's leading diversified materials manufacturer Nitto Denko Corporation and its U.S. water treatment technology subsidiary Hydranautics (collectively "Nitto Denko Group") is pleased to announce it has been contracted to supply its SWC6 MAX and ESPA2+ elements to the Victorian Desalination Project, currently under construction on the Bass Coast, near the town of Wonthaggi.
The contract was awarded by design and construction contractor for the project, Thiess Degremont.
The project will deliver Australia's latest desalination plant and is being delivered as a Public-Private Partnership. When operational, the plant will offer a 440,000 m3/day capacity and supply an estimated 150 billion liters of water per year to Melbourne, Geelong, South Gippsland and Western Port towns.
Nitto Denko Corporation President Yukio Nagira, of Osaka, Japan, has stated, "The newest SWC6 MAX element was selected for this project because it achieves both the greatest permeate and highest salt rejection in the industry."
The Victorian Desalination Project is due for completion by the end of December 2011.
With very small precipitation, Australia is said to be the driest continent in the world, despite the country's geographical-climatic advantages such as mild climate, vast land area and richness of its natural resources. The country has experienced serious droughts since 2000, and according to projection by the Australian government research organization CISRO (Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization) and Bureau of Meteorology, the drought periods are expected to stretch by as much as 20% (vs. 1990) by 2030. About 60% of the Australian land area being occupied by agricultural land, some two-thirds of water used within the country goes to agricultural use. If droughts keep occurring frequently at the projected rate, the impact on agricultural production would be a large one, so that water availability is a big social issue in Australia.
The most important characteristics for a seawater desalination membrane are water flow and salt rejection, which happen to be in an essentially mutual trade-off relationship. SWC6 MAX, however, has successfully realized the world's highest-level water flow and salt rejection (99.8%), both at the same time. Because SWC6 MAX demonstrates water flow roughly 1.5 times even compared to the already advanced conventional SWC5 model, it can be operated at lower water pressures, thereby contributing to energy savings in the seawater desalination process.
In addition to the Melbourne desalination plant this time-the sixth large-scale plant in Australia-Nitto Denko Group has successfully contracted to also supply RO membrane elements for other desalination plants in Adelaide and Gold Coast. This plant upon its completion in 2011 is designed to meet about one-third of the daily water supply requirement in Melbourne. Thus the Group would account for purified water production of some 850,000 ton/day in Australia when all three plants are in full operation, as shown in the table below, to secure a market share of over 60% there.
As a result, Nitto Denko Group would account for a cumulative water generation of roughly 4.7 million ton/day in the world's seawater desalination market, and continues to hold the top share there.
Nitto Denko Group has a high achievement record to show in ultra-pure water production, seawater desalination and wastewater recycling, based on their world's highest-class RO membrane technology platform. In the seawater desalination and wastewater recycling fields, they hold the world's highest installed volume record.
The Group plans to expand into microfiltration and ultrafiltration membranes as well as microbioreactor processes with RO membranes at the center, and by further implementing membrane maintenance and repair service business, it hopes to raise the value offering to customers in the water treatment business.
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