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Desalination Recently, Formosa Petrochemical Corp. (FPCC; Mailiao, Taiwan; www.fpcc.com.tw) commissioned IDE Technologies (Kadima, Israel; www.ide-tech.com) to build a desalination plant in Yunlin County, Taiwan that will be the first large-scale application for IDE’s high-purity boron-removal process. The three-step process combines reverse-osmosis (RO) membrane technologies (seawater RO followed by four stages of brackish-water RO) with an ion-exchange system that employs a specialized resin to absorb boron, says Dotan Gur, turnkey projects director at IDE Technologies. IDE’s desalination technology is said to be the world’s first to reach the stringent boron concentration level of 0.01 parts-per-million (ppm) at the scale required by FPCC for its cogeneration process plant. “With water of this purity, FPCC will be able to circulate the water required for cogeneration up to 100 cycles,” explains Gur. This purity will also help to meet local regulations for blowdown water discharge. This technology has been installed at much smaller water-treatment plants, but never at such a large scale — the FPCC plant will have a capacity of 105,000 m3/d and is slated to begin commercial operation in about two years.  
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