Characterizing flat sheet membrane resistance fraction of chemically enhanced backflush

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

32 Scopus Citations
View graph of relations


Related Research Unit(s)


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)61-67
Journal / PublicationChemical Engineering Journal
Online published4 Sep 2015
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jan 2016


This study attempts to demonstrate the applicability of chemically enhanced backflush (CEB) to flat sheet (FS) membranes and aims at examining the membrane resistance fraction of complex organic foulants without applying hydraulic cleaning. With sodium hypochlorite (NaOCl) applied (i.e., 100-600. mg/L) as an oxidant chemical, complex soluble microbial products (SMP) foulants were effectively removed from the membrane in 60-90. min, and the membrane resistance is governed by the CEB bulk reaction and the transport, penetration and back transport of NaOCl. An in-depth study has proved that the cake resistance associated from the SMP foulants is more sensitive to CEB runtime, whereas the fouling resistance is more sensitive to the concentration of NaOCl. Nevertheless, for the foulant which mainly compose of dissolved organic matters, the cake resistance can be effectively removed in a shorter runtime and with a lower concentration of NaOCl as compared with the SMP foulant. However, high concentration of NaOCl is still needed to remove its fouling resistance. In addition, this study demonstrates that even in the absent of hydraulic backflush CEB is still highly compatible with FS membrane and the effectiveness is comparable to that of hollow fiber membrane.

Research Area(s)

  • Cake resistance, Chemically enhanced backflush (CEB), Flat sheet membrane, Fouling resistance, Membrane bioreactor, Membrane fouling