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Students showcasing research posters at the 2015 GCEP Symposium

ERE Seminar: Meagan Mauter, PhD (Stanford University) - Managing high salinity brines from...

October 21, 2019 - 12:30pm to 1:20pm
Room 104, Green Earth Sciences Building, 367 Panama Street, Stanford
Event Sponsor: 
Energy Resources Engineering
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Meagan Mauter, PhD | Stanford University

TITLEManaging high salinity brines from geologic carbon sequestration

ABSTRACTTransformational changes are needed to sustain energy and water systems in the 21st century. From decarbonizing the energy sector to building a circular water economy, these systemic transitions will require large scale infrastructure design and technology innovation. This presentation will outline these associated challenges for managing high salinity brines from geologic carbon storage and discuss a framework for evaluating potential technology and policy solutions. By combining systems analysis and technoeconomic analysis, we find that the majority of saline brines produced during the carbon sequestration process will exceed 100,000 ppm total dissolved solids. Treating this water using state-of-the-art thermal methods, including mechanical vapor recompression and crystallization, would impose significant energy penalties and negate some of the benefits of carbon storage. Identifying the need for energy efficient high salinity brine treatment, we developed a novel, membrane-based approach for concentrating high salinity brines entitled Osmotically Assisted Reverse Osmosis (OARO). Finally, we perform a cost optimization of OARO configurations, demonstrating that while the cost optimal and energy optimal configurations are not equivalent for this system, the cost-optimal configuration for OARO dominates MVC on both cost and energy consumption metrics.


Professor Meagan Mauter holds bachelors degrees in Civil & Environmental Engineering and History from Rice University, a Masters of Environmental Engineering from Rice University, and a PhD in Chemical and Environmental Engineering from Yale University. She completed post-doctoral training in the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs and the Mossavar Rahmani Center for Business and Government at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, where she was an Energy Technology Innovation Policy Fellow.

At Stanford University, Professor Mauter is appointed as an Associate Professor of Civil & Environmental Engineering and as a Center Fellow, by courtesy, in the Woods Institute for the Environment. She directs the Water and Energy Efficiency for the Environment Lab (WE3Lab) with the mission of providing sustainable water supply in a carbon-constrained world through innovation in water treatment technology, optimization of water management practices, and redesign of water policies. Ongoing research efforts include: 1) developing automated, precise, robust, intensified, modular, and electrified (A-PRIME) water desalination technologies to support a circular water economy, 2) addressing the water constraints to deep decarbonization by quantifying the water requirements of energy systems and developing new technologies for high salinity brine treatment, 3) supporting design and enforcement of California agricultural water policy.