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Content derived from Wikipedia article on Blue energy


Blue energy is the energy retrieved from the difference in the salt concentration between seawater and river water with the use of reverse electro dialysis (RED) (or osmosis) with ion specific membranes. The waste product in this process is brackish water.


The technology of reversed electrodialysis has been confirmed in laboratory conditions. As in common technologies, the cost of the membrane was an obstacle. A new, cheap membrane, based on an electrically modified polyethylene plastic, made it fit for potential commercial use.


As in a fuel cell, the cells are stacked.


In the Netherlands, for example, more than 3,300 m³ fresh water runs into the sea per second on average. The energy potential is therefore 3,300 MW, based on an output of 1 MW/m3 fresh water per second.




A module with a capacity of 250 kW has the size of a shipping container.




2005 A 50 kW plant is located at a coastal test site in Harlingen, the Netherlands. The focus is on prevention of biofouling on the anode, cathode and membranes and increasing the membrane performance.


Related topics @ Wikipedia


Reverse osmosis

Semipermeable membrane

Green energy

Renewable energy



KEMA/VolkerWessels/Velsen Flexoplast


Further Reading

Loeb S., Norman R. S. (1975). "Osmotic Power Plants". Science 189: 654-655. DOI:10.1126/science.189.4203.654.  

Loeb S. (1998). "Energy Production at the Dead Sea by Pressure-Retarded Osmosis: Challenge or Chimera?". Desalination 120: 247-262. DOI:10.1016/S0011-9164(98)00222-7. 

Norman R. S. (1974). "Water Salination: A Source of Energy". Science 186. DOI:10.1126/science.186.4161.350. 

Cath T. Y., Childress A. E., Elimelech M. (2006). "Forward osmosis: Principles, applications, and recent developments (Review)". Journal of Membrane Science 281: 70-87. 

Loeb S. (1988). "Comments on the suitability of reverse osmosis membranes for energy recover by submarine osmotic power plants Desalination (Review)". Journal of Membrane Science 68: 75-76. DOI:10.1016/0011-9164(88)80044-4. 

Loeb S. (2002). "Large-scale power production by pressure-retarded osmosis, using river water and sea water passing through spiral modules desalination (Review)". Journal of Membrane Science 143: 115-122. DOI:10.1016/S0011-9164(02)00233-3. 


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