The membrane separation technology has been widely adopted in the industries and households for water softening and water treatment due to its cost-effectiveness. Membrane separation process is also gaining popularity in wastewater treatment applications in industries and municipalities across the world. One of the key issues which affect the effective performance of membrane separation technology is membrane fouling, a procedure in which unwanted solute or elements such as scalants, colloidal impurities and microbes found in feed water, are deposited onto the membrane surface and membrane pores during the water treatment process which affects the water processing speed and causes downfall in the performance of the membrane separation process.
Membrane fouling can produce severe flux weakening and change in the quality of the water. Severe membrane fouling ultimately leads to membrane replacement. To ensure uninterrupted, faster and cost-effective operation, membrane cleaning becomes necessary which is done with chemicals such as antiscalants and cleaners.Based on chemical properties membrane cleaning chemicals market can be categorized under five broad segments namely, Caustic, Oxidants or Disinfectants, Acids, Surfactants and Chelating Agents. Caustic chemicals are used in hydrolysis and solubilization of membranes, acids are used as solubilizes for membranes. Surfactants are used in emulsification, dispersion and surface conditioning of membrane affected from fouling. Based on application, membrane cleaning chemicals can be classified as antiscalants, cleaners and pre-treatment chemicals.
North America is the largest market for membrane cleaning chemicals market, followed by Europe and Asia Pacific. The increasing adoption of membrane separation technology in waste water treatment plants in industries and municipalities in North America is the key reason behind its growth in this region. Asia Pacific and Middle East countries are expected to witness highest growth rate due to increasing demand of drinking water and upcoming regulation such as India’s clean Ganga project for the year 2014 on waste water treatment by the policymakers in this region.
The global membrane cleaning chemicals market has been witnessing a double digit growth in the recent past. Increasing adoption of membrane separation technologies in countries such as China, India, the U.S., Brazil, Australia and Middle East countries has boosted membrane cleaning chemicals market in recent years. Increasing urbanization and increasing population in the developing countries is escalating the demand for drinking water.
Waste water treatment demand from growing allied industries such as food and beverages paper and pulp (uses fresh water in high consistency pulp bleaching and medium consistency pulp bleaching) and electronics (uses processed water at various stages of silicon wafer) is driving membrane separation technology and hence membrane cleaning chemicals market in this region. Some of the leading global players operating in membrane cleaning chemicals market include Veolia Water Solutions and Technologies, GE Water and Process Technologies, BWA Water Additives, Ecolab Inc. and Kemira Oyj.
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