Thermal Desalination (MED & MVC)

Cost Effective, Efficient Thermal Desalination Solutions

Thermal Desalination Solutions for Seawater

Refineries, power plants and other industries need high purity water. The thermal desalination process uses energy to evaporate water and subsequently condense it again. When there is waste heat or sufficient electricity available, as is often the case with refineries and power plants, thermal desalination is an efficient and viable solution.

IDE is internationally recognized as a pioneer and leader in the delivery of thermal desalination plants. IDE’s low temperature thermal distillation units are capable of producing both drinking and boiler feed water from seawater. They are available in two versions differentiated by the method used for the supply of energy:

  • Multi-Effect Distillation (MED), a low-pressure steam process.
  • Mechanical Vapour Compression (MVC), a proprietary electrically driven mechanical compressor

Thermal Desalination – Multi-Effect-Distillation (MED) Solutions for Seawater

IDE’s MED units are the industry’s most reliable, robust and cost-efficient seawater desalination solutions. With capacities ranging from 600 to 25,000 m3/day per unit, the MED units produce a reliable, low-cost stream of high purity water for power plants and industries that can provide low-grade steam as an energy source. IDE customizes its MED solutions for the needs of each customer, including the site-specific characteristics of seawater and steam inputs.

The World’s Most Advanced Thermal Desalination Technology

The MED approach utilizes the advanced technologies and know-how developed by IDE to achieve exceptional thermal efficiency and reliability. Its underlying concept is a multi-effect process in which a spray of seawater is repeatedly evaporated and then condensed, with each effect at a lower temperature and pressure. This highly efficient process multiplies the quantity of pure water that can be produced using a given quantity of energy, resulting in a significant reduction in cost.

Key Benefits of IDE’s MED Plants

  • Safe and reliable continuous operation
  • Lower operation and maintenance costs
  • Eco-friendly solutions to minimize impact on the environment
  • Trusted partnership for solutions that are built to last

Key Features of IDE’s MED Plants

  • Fast installation time
  • High availability and very high reliability for continuous operation
  • Proprietary low temperature process for minimized desalination costs
  • Customized for economic, efficient performance over the long term Modular design allows the number of process effects to be optimized for the plant’s specific environment and site conditions
  • Prevent scaling and fouling with large wetting areas in the heat transfer tubes
  • Reliable, non-clogging wetting operations due to large pitch design
  • Prevent heavy metal ions from entering the plant with our on-line ion trap
  • Eliminate corrosion phenomena through de-aeration of the incoming feed (seawater) within the falling film condenser
  • Electrical insulation and protection against galvanic corrosion with use of rubber grommets to seal all heat transfer tubes
  • Extended lifecycle due to non-erosive titanium condenser components

Thermal Desalination – Mechanical Vapour Compression (MVC) Solutions for Seawater

IDE’s self-contained MVC unit is a reliable, cost-effective desalination solution for refineries, process industries, power stations and remote development sites – perfect for when electricity is the only source of power. Dozens of enterprises with a critical need for stable and reliable sources of process and boiler feed water have deployed the MVC as an affordable, low-maintenance, workhorse desalination solution.

Higher Performance and Unmatched Reliability and Availability
IDE’s MVC desalination plants deliver continuous uninterrupted desalination, independent of waste heat cycle.

Our MVC plants use waste steam to generate electricity. This means operational costs are reduced and less steam is released into the environment. A win-win. Operational costs are further lowered due to a simple process and design with few moving parts. This means higher overall efficiency for lower cost.

Key Benefits of IDE’s MVC Plants

  • Customized for economic performance over the longer-term, delivering lower operation and maintenance costs
  • Eco-friendly solutions – recycle waste steam to generate electricity
  • Compact size for reduced footprint and CAPEX
  • Trusted partnership for solutions that are built to last

 Key Features of IDE’s MVC plants

  •  Highest efficiency compression due to unique patented, reliable, field-tested compressor technology
  • Low maintenance due to fully automated operation
  • Heat transfer bundles made of a special aluminium alloy suitable for seawater applications
  •  Fast and easy installation
  • Improved feed spray system efficiency from non-clogging, corrosion-proof acetyl spray nozzles optimized for wetting requirements
  • Compact size due to skid-mounted steel frame that houses all the unit’s operating and process control modules including pumps, motors, piping and instrumentation


Transform your water challenges into valuable water assets. Contact an expert now.

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