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Hitachi Zosen launches waste-powered desalination

Hitachi Zosen has developed a desalination system that uses heat from waste incineration, designed with water-scarce Middle Eastern nations in mind

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Desalination, Hitachi, Hitachi zosen, Renewable energy, Waste to energy, News

Hitachi Zosen has developed a desalination system that uses heat from waste incineration, designed with water-scarce Middle Eastern nations in mind.

The system generates potable water either through distillation or reverse osmosis. In the distillation process, heat from the burned garbage spins turbines that generate steam from saltwater, while with reverse osmosis the turbines generate electricity that powers the process. One ton of garbage can produce about 600 kilowatt-hours of electricity or up to roughly 100 tons of water.

Hitachi Zosen will market versions that use either one or both processes to government agencies and state-run enterprises. Construction will cost as much as building a waste incinerator and a regular desalination unit combined, but operating expenses will be kept down. The Japanese company aims to quintuple annual desalination facility sales to $414mn by fiscal 2020.

The company's system also will capture demand for incinerators necessary to deal with the excess waste that comes with economic development. Garbage incineration is not widespread in the Middle East, where landfills are favoured.

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