Published on February 2014

Paper on RAMDAS Project

The paper written by Dr S P Viswanathan, Dr Raju Abraham, Vineet Saini and Dr Sanjay Bajpai details the RAMDAS solar desalination project developed by Empereal-KGDS, with support from the National Institute of Ocean Technology, the Tamil Nadu Water and Drainage Board, the Department of Science and Technology and IIT Madras. The project was a successful model of the inter-institutional collaboration and public-private participation for development projects to meet the water requirements in India.

An LFR (Linear Fresnel Reflector) solar thermal system was used to concentrate solar energy on a receiver, where steam was generated at 21 bar and stored in an accumulator. The steady flow of steam was supplied to a thermo-vapour compressor at a pressure of 5 bar through a pressure reducing valve. The discharge steam was supplied to a 6-effect MED system consisting of evaporators, final condenser, vacuum condenser and pre-heaters. The complete system was designed, fabricated, integrated and commissioned at Ramanathapuram district in southern Tamil Nadu from 2010 to 2012. The water quality caters to the multiple applications of distilled water, including local drinking water requirements, paving the way for more sustainable drinking water solutions.

This paper presents the technical and social challenges encountered, as well as the lessons