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A review of cleaner production in electroplating industries using electrodialysis

Scarazzato, T., Panossian, Z., Tenório, J.A.S., Pérez-Herranz, V., Espinosa, D.C.R.
Journal of cleaner production 2017 v.168 pp. 1590-1602
aqueous solutions, brackish water, chromium, copper, drinking water, electrodialysis, energy, energy resources, environmental impact, humans, industry, methodology, nickel, product life cycle, risk, wastewater, wastewater treatment, water reuse, zinc
Cleaner production is an industrial preventive strategy created to promote benefits for the environment and for human beings. Its basic principle lies in using natural energy resources in an efficient way and yet in reducing risks and impacts on the environment and on human beings throughout the life cycle of a product. Electrodialysis is a membrane separation process which uses an electrical potential difference as a driving force to promote ionic separation in aqueous solutions. The technique was initially developed for the production of drinking water from brackish water. However, the use of electrodialysis in the treatment of industrial wastewaters is becoming more attractive, due to its characteristics. The technique is considered a clean process, since it allows the reuse of water and the recovery of substances. In this work, the advancement of electrodialysis applied to cleaner production in electroplating industry will be discussed. The aim of this work is to present electrodialysis as a technology which can fulfill the requirements of cleaner production concepts in the electroplating industry. The research was performed starting from a predefined question: “how is electrodialysis becoming a cleaner production strategy in the electroplating industry?”. The research was divided in two main themes. The first search was related to the most important cleaner production practices applied for the plating industry. The second search was associated with the electrodialysis application in the electroplating industry. The results obtained from the collected publications were compared in order to propose an answer to the research question. The results showed that almost a half of the published articles evaluated the improvement of the wastewater treatment as a cleaner production strategy to be applied in plating industries. In addition, the wastewater treatment was the most cited application of electrodialysis in the plating industry, especially for copper, nickel and zinc recovery and for chromium VI removal. Results shows that electrodialysis is becoming an important and solid strategy to promote cleaner production in the plating industry. The two most important issues to be improved for this application are the system efficiency for macromolecules and the energy waste when dilute solutions are used. For the latter, the use of hybrid techniques such as electrodeionization was the most evaluated alternative.