APRIL 2023

Aqua Membranes is the garage start-up now 3D printing its own membrane path

Aqua Tech's Andrew Godfrey sat down with Aqua Membranes' CEO, Craig Beckman to find out more about 3D printing spacer manufacturing.

Read the Article


Recent research doesn't account for Aqua Membranes technology, but it should!

The Journal of Chemical Engineering recently published the article, “The potentials of 3D-printed feed spacers in reducing the environmental footprint of membrane separation processes.” While the article does a good job of highlighting many of the main benefits of 3D-printed spacers in general, including lower pressure drop, increased output and lower fouling potential, it misses a few additional benefits offered only by ConZerv from Aqua Membranes, which uses our patented Printed Spacer Technology®:

The 3D-printed technology discussed in the paper is still being placed between the sheets of the membrane. Aqua Membranes prints the spacers directly on the surface. This is relevant because our technique allows the spacers to take up far less space on the membrane, which reduces both fouling and pressure drop. In return, customers enjoy greater energy cost savings and reduced emissions.

The paper compares how different 3D patterns can address individual benefits, but ConZerv delivers multiple benefits at the same time. This means that our customers don’t have to choose between benefits or use more material than necessary when customizing their products with Aqua Membranes.

Printing directly on the surface allows us to print more quickly than the printing highlighted in the article, which reduces fabrication energy.

By printing on the membrane, we are changing the way elements are constructed. While the article claims that there is not currently a good solution to feed spacer challenges, we respectfully disagree. ConZerv addresses all the shortcomings outlined by the authors. The future of reverse osmosis element construction is here, and it’s at Aqua Membranes.

AMTA wrap-up

Last month, the Aqua Membranes team attended the 2023 Membranes Technology Conference & Exposition in Knoxville, TN. We would like to thank everyone who took time to stop by our booth as well as CJ Kurth’s session entitled, “3D-Printed Feed Spacers in the Wild.” This highlighted results from a boiler feed RO installation at the University of New Mexico and the benefits of upgrading from a conventional feed spacer mesh system to our innovative spiral wound construction. If you weren't able to be there, check out our booth display video below and see how the two stacked up firsthand.

These past few months have been busy for Aqua Membranes. We continue to work to ramp up our production and develop Printed Spacer Technology. Now more than ever, we are meeting customer demand and getting more ConZerv elements from Aqua Membranes into operation.

Take a look at the case study we've included that demonstrates some of our recent success. This installation is only one example of how we have provided value to our customers using Printed Spacer Technology. Keep up with us and don’t miss out on future installs and information coming.

—Aqua Membranes

View Case Study

About Aqua Membranes

With its unique Printed Spacer Technology, Aqua Membranes is revolutionizing membrane water filtration in home RO systems, desalination, food and beverage, and industrial processes.  Applying a unique customized raised pattern to flat sheet membranes, the new technology replaces conventional mesh feed spacers in spiral-wound elements. This simple innovation dramatically lowers user operating expenses and capital costs and increases water throughput capacity.

Learn more at www.aquamembranes.com

Connect to learn more or arrange a trial!