From laboratory to pilot scale. Advances in LIFE TRANSFOMEM project

Published On: February 11, 2016

Recently the annual meeting of the project has been held

Last 21st January, representative staff from LIFE TRANSFOMEM consortium attended to the Annual meeting at Cuevas del Almanzora #desalination Plant. The main objective of this meeting is to evaluate the progress of the project in term of actions and chronogram. 

Proyecto LIFE TransfomemNowadays the laboratory phase of the project has been completed, except for specific studies to provide technical support to the demonstration project (membrane autopsies). To develop the pilot-scale actions, the project has a stock of 60 #end-of-life reverse osmosis #membranes of different desalination plants (all from Spain) and diverse fouling (organic, inorganic, colloidal, biofouling). Some of these end-of-life membranes during their operating life were treating seawater and some others membranes were treating seawater. 25 membranes have been characterized (in terms of permeability and rejection) and selected for different types of transformation (into nanofiltration and ultrafiltration membranes) through the two pilots plants (active and passive pilot). Preliminary results of the pilot scale assays are promising. They seem to correspond to the main conclusions obtained at the first phase of laboratory, already completed.

So far, the results have disseminated in scientific journals such as Journal of Membrane Science and Desalination (submitted). Some of the TRANSFOMEM researchers have attended to international conferences such as IDAWC2015 and RecyclingExpo 2015. Indeed, it has been posted a total of 48 different news or press releases in 19 different media and online magazines  (iAgua, FuturEnviro, Retema, Aguasresiduales, blog del Agua, Interempresas…).  A homemade video has been done in order to explain how we open the end-of-life membranes for fouling evaluation and samples extraction in an autopsy (see video). All these results (and newsletter, poster, etc.) are available on the project website.

LIFE TRANSFOMEMTRANSFOMEM is a project funded under the LIFE + financial instrument  (contract n. LIFE13 ENV/ES/000751). The project is related to “Transformation of disposed reverse osmosis membranes into recycled ultrafiltration and nanofiltration membranes”. The project, in which participate IMDEA Water Institute and the industry SADYT, began in June 2014 and will take 48 months.

All information related to the project and the results that are obtained is available through the website ( and in social networks: Facebook and Twitter.


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