LANXESS Highlights Its High Water Permeability ULP Membrane Elements at AMTA 2018

Lewabrane ULP

LANXESS’ Liquid Purification Technologies (LPT) business unit—operating in the United States as LANXESS Sybron Chemicals—enables customers in a wide variety of industries to meet their water purification challenges with a broad portfolio of ion exchange resins, reverse osmosis membranes and other specialized technologies and services.  The company will be putting the spotlight on its high water permeability ULP (Ultra Low Pressure) Lewabrane® brand membrane elements at AMTA’s 2018 Membrane Technology Conference & Exposition in West Palm Beach, Florida, from March 12 – 16.

The new Lewabrane ULP line is available in both four-inch and eight-inch diameter by 40-inch long membrane elements. The eight-inch ULP elements are available with a 400 square foot membrane with an innovative 34mil spacer using ASD (Alternating Strand Design) geometry known for improved performance in biofouling environments. The eight-inch ULP line is also available with a 440 square foot membrane with a 28mil spacer. All Lewabrane ULP membranes are wet tested, and supported with a signed CoA.

The new Lewabrane Ultra Low Pressure (ULP) line offers high- water permeability and high micro pollutant rejection at low operating pressures. This is especially important in potable water applications where high flow productivity and good salt passage are important process parameters that determine the cost efficiency of the RO process. High water permeability means lower feed pressures, which means less power consumption per 1000 gallons (or 44 m3) of product water. Lewabrane ULP membranes typically require 40% less operational pressure than standard pressure membranes (typically tested at 225 psi and 2000 ppm NaCl). Additionally, these membranes are an excellent option for reducing micro contaminants in drinking water supplies.

The typical applications of Lewabrane ULP RO membranes are the filtration of drinking water and wastewater. Drinking water and wastewater plants often process large quantities of raw water daily. A membrane with a higher flux or water permeability can process large quantities of water at lower feed pressures, and hence, at lower power consumption, and lower operational costs than standard pressure membranes. This is particularly important in municipal water treatment applications where power consumption is usually the largest single cost for an operating facility.

Lewabrane ULP membrane elements are supported in LANXESS’ innovative LewaPlus® design software. It allows for the combined simulation and design of reverse osmosis (RO) and ion exchange (IX) processes for water treatment. LewaPlus allows users to design highly complex water treatment systems, and develop accurate projections operating performance as well as detailed calculations for capital and operating costs. This innovative design software is supported in 11 languages and is a free download at http://lpt.lanxess.com/en/lewaplus-software/.

More information on LANXESS’ Lewabrane® reverse osmosis membranes and downloadable brochures are available at www.lewabrane.com.

Shelco Filters Completes Expansion

In order to meet increased demand for its ultra-premium MicroVantage line of filters and cartridges, Shelco Filters has expanded its manufacturing facility by more than 20,000 square feet.  The expansion, which was completed late in 2017, will be dedicated to the production and testing of the company’s pleating operation for the popular MicroVantage filter cartridges and other Shelco products.

Shelco’s MicroVantage pleated cartridges, membrane cartridges and high-purity cartridges are designed to meet and exceed the demanding specifications of a wide spectrum of today’s industries – from food and beverage to chemicals, gases and paints. The line, which is sold directly through Shelco as well as in all major distribution outlets, includes sanitary filter housings and high-purity housings for critical and demanding applications that require maximum durability, ease-of-use and value.

“By focusing on developing cost-effective and efficient filters that meet the demands of today’s growing economy, we were able to increase our business to such an extent that we outgrew our existing space,” said Robert LeConche, president and CEO of Shelco.  “We were fortunate that we could expand at our current location to create the additional manufacturing space and we look forward to a strong future making the best filters on the market.”

Founded in 1973, Shelco (www.shelco.com) offers one of the most extensive lines of filters and cartridges, distributed and sold throughout the world.  The company’s product lines meet the needs of countless industrial and high-purity applications, including water and other in-plant liquids, gases, foods, beverages, chemical, petrochemicals, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, photographic solutions, fuels, lubricants, paints and coatings, plating solutions and more.  Additionally, Shelco offers a complete line of industrial cartridge and bag housing along with a complete line of disposable bags.

Ahlstrom-Munksjö acquires land next to its Louveira plant in Brazil

Ahlstrom-Munksjö announced in December 2017 that it is taking the first step towards a potential capacity expansion plan at its Louveira plant in Brazil.

“Demand for filtration media in South America is expected to continue to grow in the coming years and we clearly foresee the need to increase capacity in the future to support the growing demand for filtration media in the region,” said Executive Vice President of the Business Area Filtration & Performance, Fulvio Capussotti.

“The acquisition of this land constitutes an important step towards our overall ambition to further develop an industrial platform in South America that will enable us to continue to support our filtration customers in the region for the years to come,” he added.

The Louveira plant is located in the San Paolo region in Brazil, employs around 110 people and manufactures filtration media for transportation and industrial applications.

JX Nippon ANCI launches Milife

JX Nippon ANCI, Inc. headquartered in Kennesaw, Georgia, with manufacturing in Roanoke, AL and composite manufacturing in Dalton, Georgia, will launch, Milife®, their fine denier polyester nonwoven in January 2018 for filtration applications.

Milife is a continuous fiber product but is made by a propriety technology that is not like spunbond. It utilizes a nonwoven process with continuous, oriented filaments, with machine and cross direction fibers alignment. Milife is available as MD only or with MD and CD strands.  Milife is manufactured in Japan by a sister company under stringent quality procedures and is exclusively distributed by JX Nippon ANCI, Inc. – Kennesaw GA.

The technology allows very fine fiber sizes. Milife normally has fiber diameters of 10 microns (1 dpf) and Milife Microfiber has fiber diameters of 2.7 microns. This places Milife fiber sizes between spunbond and meltblown and with Milife Microfiber smaller/equal than meltblown. Milife fiber sizes fills a gap in the current nonwoven fiber sizes available.

Milife is a thin product, with exceptional narrow fiber size distribution, low elongation, dimensional stability, and excellent web uniformity. It is available with weights from 8 gsm to 60 gsm. Milife is currently used in luxury packaging, interior decoration, specialty tapes, medical and other industrial applications. Milife can be used in filtration products as a support material, as a filter media or as a fine denier component in a composite.

JX Nippon ANCI, VP Sales & Marketing, Gabriel Cuellar, notes “we are excited on the launch of Milife for filtration applications and believe Milife with its unique properties offers additional and new options to filter manufacturers.”

Evonik opens new membrane production facility in Schörfling (Austria)

Evonik Industries has opened another membrane production facility at its Austrian plant in Schörfling. The new hollow fiber spinning plant predominantly produces membrane modules for efficient nitrogen generation and for process gases. Nitrogen accounts for roughly 40 percent of the estimated global gas separation market, making it the second-largest market after natural gas.

Dr. Harald Schwager, deputy chairman of Evonik’s Executive Board, said: “The membrane business is an excellent example of how important innovations are for corporate success. Here, we are generating growth for Evonik with new products, and harnessing new markets in close cooperation with our customers.”

In Schörfling, Evonik currently produces gas separation modules predominantly for the biogas market and helium recovery. The new hollow fiber spinning plant doubles the existing production capacities for SEPURAN® membranes.

Dr. Claus Rettig, chairman of the Board of Management of Evonik Resource Efficiency GmbH, said: “The Schörfling investment expands our possibilities for placing the membrane portfolio on an even broader footing. Our aim is to offer our customers and partners custom-tailored membranes in the entire gas separation market.”

In total, Evonik has invested an amount in the mid double-digit million euro range in the expansion of the Austrian plant. Besides the new hollow fiber spinning plant, additional facilities have been created for technology development, application technology, membrane testing and quality assurance. Over 30 new jobs have been created in production and administration.

The company’s plant in Lenzing near the Schörfling site manufactures the source material polyimide, a high-performance polymer, which is spun and then further processed in Schörfling. The infrastructure in Lenzing is being correspondingly upgraded as part of site expansion.

SEPURAN® membranes are used for the highly efficient separation of gases such as methane, nitrogen, or hydrogen from gas mixtures. The innovative hollow fiber membranes made from high-performance plastic are at the heart of the separation process. They are highly resistant to high temperature and pressure, and can be adjusted to customer requirements. The advantages in using Evonik’s membrane technology for gas separation are down to the more precise separation of the gases and the greater productivity this offers.

The SEPURAN product family of Evonik’s Resource Efficiency Segment includes membranes for biogas processing, on-site nitrogen generation as well as for helium and hydrogen recovery. Within this Segment, the High Performance Polymers Business Line has been developing and producing high-performance plastics for more than 50 years that allow for resource-efficient innovations in a wide range of industries.

In 2011, SEPURAN Green membranes were successfully launched on the market for biogas treatment, and have been installed in over 100 biogas treatment plants all over the world.

Since then, the membrane technology has been continuously developed. Meanwhile, the SEPURAN Noble membrane for helium and hydrogen recovery has been added to the product range. Evonik expects the helium and hydrogen market to grow in the low double-digit percentage range in the next few years. In 2016, the specialty chemicals company and the technology group The Linde Group stepped up their collaboration in the gas separation market using membranes. The partnership has already resulted in a reference plant for helium recovery in Mankota (Canada) – the first of its kind in the world to combine both separation processes, membrane and pressure swing adsorption technology. The new plant processes more than 250,000 standard cubic meters of crude gas per day, and produces industrial-grade helium (99.999%).

The new hollow fibre membrane for efficient nitrogen generation – SEPURAN N2 – was added to the membrane portfolio in early 2016.