High Recovery RO

Unlock Energy Efficiency and Reliability with the PX® Pressure Exchanger® for High Recovery Reverse Osmosis

High recovery reverse osmosis (RO) refers simply to an RO system designed to produce a high volume of freshwater relative to the volume of feedwater. In seawater reverse osmosis (SWRO), the volume of freshwater produced (also known as the recovery rate) is typically about 40-45% of the volume of feedwater that enters the system.

While it is technologically possible to achieve a higher recovery rate and can reduce capital expenses, it also requires more energy, driving up the operating cost of producing freshwater. The SWRO industry has over time settled on a 40-45% recovery rate as the optimal balance between the volume of water produced and the energy required to produce it. However, with water scarcity worsening around the world and the use of RO in applications such as brackish and industrial wastewater treatment growing, interest in high recovery RO is growing as well.

Unparalleled Energy Savings, Reliability, and Flexibility

Energy intensity is the biggest hurdle to high recovery RO, significantly driving up operating expenses. Fortunately, this is where the PX® Pressure Exchanger® can offer great value to water producers. Our highly efficient family of PX devices provides unmatched energy recovery for RO systems, delivering efficiencies of up to 98%.

High recovery RO is often associated with multi-stage systems. While other types of energy recovery devices (ERD) are only effective in specific system configurations and a narrow operating condition range, the PX offers unmatched flexibility in system design. It works by essentially absorbing and then recirculating any residual pressure left in reject flow, providing significant energy savings regardless of other components or membranes in the system.

Because high recovery RO requires less feedwater coming in to the system, some system components can be reduced in size, resulting in reduced capital costs as well. When paired with the PX, which offers the highest OPEX savings compared to other ERDs, plant operators can maximize their savings for high recovery RO.

Designed with only one moving part using precision engineered alumina ceramic, the PX stands up to the harshest of environments resulting in an unmatched life cycle cost advantage. The PX requires no scheduled maintenance and has demonstrated proven performance across tens of thousands of installations in SWRO.