Report By: Zayneb Forozaan, Iman Fatehi, Arsou Arimi, Muhammad Zaki Fadillah, Forough Afzali, Amin Ebrahim Bakhshi Pour, Dini Adyasari, Elyas Abghoui
During IFAT 2006 on Tuesday (31 May 2016), the scholarship holders of NAWAM program had opportunity to meet Germany Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) to hear and learn about a few examples from its funding priority “sustainable Water Management (NaWaM). And also explain about one of the objective of the NaWaM funding measures that is to accelerate the transfer of basic findings from academic research into competitive services or processes in the water sector (from knowledge to product) with theme of the BMBF exhibition this year that was “Blue Innovations for a Green Economy”.
Figure 1: The DAAD and NaWaM scholars are greeting the BMBF representative
After short greeting and Speech to all DAAD NaWam scholarship Holder, a representative from BMBF showed us their exhibit and exhibitors in BMBF booth, they are as follows; NaWaM Compact, Generating electricity from wastewater Treatment by BioBZ, Sterilizing water storage and decentralization distribution system by Micro3zone, Export-oriented research and development in the field wastewater by EXPOVAL, Purifying wastewater by nidA200, EU Research Funding by NKS Umwelt. The Representative of Ministry had explain about the subjects of the BMBF’s NAWAM funding priority that focuses on the five subject areas:
- Water and energy
- Water and food
- Water and health
- Water in urban area
- Water and environment
- Water and energy
One of The subdivided funding priorities of BMBF is “Water and Energy. The research issues within the topical fields are dealt with and issued in the form of thematically oriented BMBF funding guidelines. Higher efficiency can significantly improve the energy balance in secure the supply of drinking water, the disposal of waste water, and the supply of energy area. In water and energy section, BioBZ was presented as an innovative idea for resource-efficient water management (Blue Innovations).
The project introduces a new systemic approach which might make a substantive contribution to the “energy turnaround” in sewage treatment. The approach incorporates a fuel cell which uses micro-organisms as biocatalysts in order to generate electrical energy from the (partial) biodegradation of organic constituents of sewage. The overall objective of the project is the development, investigation and assessment of a bio-electrochemical fuel cell for use in wastewater treatment plants.
- Water and Food
Securing the global food supply is the central challenge in this area. Population growth, migration and demographic development make this difficult in several respects. The aim is to secure the productivity of agriculture, which currently accounts for 70% of global water use, by establishing efficient, sustainable water management. Rural and semi-natural regions are particularly affected. They need integrated water/soil/land management. The development of innovative groundwater protection concepts and technologies is a special priority, and the various water users should be included in this process. It is particularly important to involve the food industry in research and development efforts in order to enable regionally, nationally and internationally sustainable water related value added networks. The following priority fields are to be addressed within the funding priority; Optimization of water- related value added networks in the food industry in order to boost efficiency.
Figure 3: Explanation about water and Agriculture
New concepts and technologies for the sustainable management of groundwater and surface water. Efficient irrigation strategies for sustainable agriculture.
- Water and Health
At this part of the exhibition related to water and health, we have seen a system designed for the remediation of bio films and the bacteria which grow in the water pipes especially for the holiday houses which are not used for a few months in which the bacteria have the time to grow. These bacteria could be really dangerous for the human health. In front of this interesting system, we could see the point of use in the house from which people get in contact with the bacteria in the water and may become ill because of them.
These bacteria will be killed with the Ozone. On the other side of the system, we could observe how this system can be installed in the house. At the back, there is the Ozone generator which produces the O3 and with the sensor on the top, you could observe the O3 production. At the analytical side, the O3can be turned on and the bubbles come out. At this point, the electrolysis of the water happens and the sensor will show a potential and that is how we could say whether O3is produced or not.
As an example, we could see the oxidation of the organic compounds in the water with Indigo (the blue ink) which is oxidized by the ozone and becomes colorless and that is also the way the bacteria are killed in this system. Turning on the system only for two hours in the night is enough to kill all the bacteria remained in the pipelines. There have been experiments performed to make sure about that. Also there is only a low dosage of O3required (8 ppb) which is not so much considering that the maximum amount of allowed O3 in the water in Germany is 50 ppb. Another good point is that with this system, there is no storage tank required, because it is only used for 2 hours in the night in the pipeline and the O3will go to the other pipes in the house and also there is no toxic by-products. This system is almost applicable for any kind of organic compound.
They plan to bring this system to the market by the end of this year (2016) and the predicted price is about 500 Euro which is a reasonable price to pay to be sure about the quality of the healthy water in your house.
- Water and urban Area
Climate change, increasing the rate of urbanization and aging water and wastewater infrastructures confront the global community including Germany to crucial and challenging issues in the current century. To reach to a sustainable system management which could effectively use the existing infrastructures and resources (e.g. water, energy, available data and), in a way that ensures providers of public service, cities, and municipalities about quality of drinking water supply, wastewater drainage and treatment and storm-water management in line with optimized allocation of the budget, a comprehensive research program was needed. For this purpose, the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) funds the development of innovative technologies, processes and system solutions for the sustainable management water resources. In this case, with a total funding of 30 million Euro with the aim of developing innovative and feasible solutions for adapting urban water management to changing conditions in Germany a project called “Smart and Multifunctional Infrastructural Systems for Sustainable Water Supply, Sanitation and Storm water Management” was funded by BMBF during 2013-2016.
Other needed fields of research for future are :sustainable water supply considering quality and quantity, optimization of operation energy in water infrastructures, DSS and management systems to assess adaptation measures and linking landscape water balance and urban water balance, with a special focus on ground water resources and ecosystem. In IFAT 2016, The BMBF stand was equipped with a reasonably big touch screen table with a user-friendly interactive platform which could be used to obtain information about most of BMBF projects all around the Germany. Users, also, could assess their information about urban water issues in Germany.
- Water and Environment
One part of their great presentation in the exhibition was about some sub-projects which are done under the joint project entitled “Technology transfer-oriented research and development in the wastewater sector-validation at industrial-scale plants” (EXPOVAL), which is launched in 2012 and is supported by BMBF. The project focuses on the extension of the existing design approaches so as to cover relatively high and relatively low wastewater temperatures and elevated salt concentrations. In addition, specific issues relating to individual wastewater treatment processes are also to be examined. EXPOVAL consists of seven sub-projects in the field of wastewater and sludge treatment. One of these sub-projects is entitled “Trickling filters”, which can be the best treatment in regions with limited energy resources and a difficult infrastructure and even can be operated almost without electric power. Trickling filters can meet the requirements associated with extensive nitrification, but can also be used if the water is being used for irrigation purposes and the N and P nutrients are to remain in it. This project is carried out in cooperation with university of Stuttgart (ISWA) and ENEXIO Water Technologies GmbH.
The aim of Water and corresponded environment is about providing a logical balance between ecology, Water Management and Productivity of water balance. It could be with achieved by having a perspective of natural and man-made water resources, which could be applied in different regions with variable water accessibility, to ensure optimum use of the trickling filters in other climates, till now this project is also set up in Dubai, Nicaragua, Georgia, Dubai, Namibia and Albania. The operation sequences of the project include; data measurement and project assessments, the existing planning, design and operating recommendations are to be extended to cover trickling filter systems used in other climatic conditions.
What we learned during our visit in IFAT 2016, it was about providing the balance with using Tricking filter system, which nowadays put lots of afford to make it more efficient. By this method, which has been inspired from nature, water will be purifying by passing through filters, which contains specific organisms helping degradation by the biofilm covering the filter material.