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Forward Osmosis

Forward Osmosis is a gentle process that transports wa­ter across a semi-permeable FO membrane from lower concentration to higher concentration side while effectively retaining any dissolved solutes in the wastewater. The driving force is the osmotic pressure difference between a solution of higher concentra­tion (draw solution) and a solution of lower concentration (feed solution).

Forward Osmosis can be effectively used for the reduction of wastewater volume before the thermal evaporation process as well as for optimizing OPEX


  • Pre-concentration of wastewater before evaporation
  • A cheaper and more sustainable path towards achieving ZLD
  • Pre-concentration of valuable streams before extraction in food as well as product recovery sectors
  • Extraction of process water while simultaneously reducing wastewater volume


  • Low Operating cost. As the volume of wastewater going to Thermal Evaporators is reduced, the overall CAPEX/OPEX cost of evaporators reduces drastically
  • Better rejection of solutes
  • Very high tolerance to contaminants (COD/TAN/TDS)


Difference between FO and RO

Operating Pressure Low (irrespective of TDS) High (depending on TDS)
Fouling FO membranes are of low fouling nature and easily recoverable Organic fouling is a major issue for RO membranes
COD Tolerance COD < 100,000 ppm


COD < 100 ppm
TDS FO reject side concentration up to 200,000 ppm RO reject concentration up to 80,000 ppm
Pre-treatment Micron filters of suitable rating are sufficient Ultrafiltration (UF) is recommended
OPEX Significantly low OPEX thereby reducing the payback period High OPEX