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Using Fertilizer Drawn Osmosis to Produce Irrigation Water and Energy for Hydroponic Farming

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  2018 ASABE Annual International Meeting  1801174.(doi:10.13031/aim.201801174)
Authors:   Pouyan Pourmovahed, Jonathan Maisonneuve
Keywords:   Wastewater treatment; Energy recovery; Osmosis; Fertigation; Hydroponics.

Abstract. Water based farming techniques such as hydroponic systems have been used widely inside and around large cities to preserve space, water, and energy. Energy and water efficiency of such systems can yet be improved with new and innovative methods. One of these methods is fertilizer drawn osmosis which works on the concept of osmotic pressure differences between concentrated fertilizer solutions and a source of water. Fertilizer solutions can extract clean water from wastewater sources and produce energy via processes such as forward osmosis and pressure retarded osmosis. In this paper, we introduce these techniques and apply them to an urban hydroponic farm. We analyze the performance of these systems and offer alternative methods to improve efficiency. Our result suggest that this system can extract all the water required by a farm using wastewater sources and recover up to 15% of the energy consumed for water pumping and ventilation.

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