Separation and Purification Reviews ( IF 5.324 ) Pub Date : 2018-09-19 , DOI: 10.1080/15422119.2018.1515777 Yongxun Jin; Hyunkyung Lee; Chanhyuk Park; Seungkwan Hong
Fouling indices have been extensively investigated in membrane applications, for evaluating the feed-water fouling potential and providing guidelines for the pretreatment process. For the past few decades, the silt density index (SDI) has been adopted as the most mature fouling index in many seawater reverse osmosis desalination plants. Recently, a modified fouling index (MFI) has gained attention since it compensates for the defects of the SDI. Its publication by ASTM Standard promoted more settlements in practical applications. To gain insight into the use of a membrane-fouling index, this paper reviewed SDI and MFI applications in laboratory-, pilot-, and plant-scale verifications, under conditions likely to be encountered in seawater desalination. The main focus was on the historical development of the fouling indices from theoretical basis to full-scale applications and the identification of future opportunities to expand their reliability in real applications. In particular, the practical implications associated with plant operation were documented to support an in-depth understanding of the MFI values.