When questions about declining membrane performance need clear answers, a membrane autopsy may be required. We recommend when to perform a membrane autopsy, perform it for you, and help you interpret the results. We can identify the type of fouling, scaling, and damage to the membrane and can recommend steps you can take to resolve the issues. We use a destructive autopsy procedure to analyze the foulant in the membrane itself. Nalco Water's Membrane Service Centers are some of the largest and best-equipped laboratories in the world that specialize in this type of work.
What is the membrane autopsy process?
Nalco Water's Membrane Solutions Group can:
- Recommend when to use an autopsy procedure. Generally, we recommend the autopsy only when a detectable biofilm or fouling layer has established itself.
- Perform the autopsy. Our world-class laboratories are equipped for expert analysis.
- Provide you with clear results that you need for better analysis. With those autopsy results, we provide recommendations to help you determine the best strategies for resolving the membrane fouling problem.
What does a membrane autopsy involve?
The autopsy analyses can include:
- Selection of the representative element(s).
- Dissection of a fouled membrane element, to reveal the membrane leaves and plastic spacer material.
- Chemical, microbiological and microscopic examination.
- Crossflow test cells to characterize membrane performance.
- Identification of the key foulants.
- Documentation through photographs.
- Remedies and recommendations.