The AquaSPICE project, dedicated to advancing water sustainability practices in the chemical industry, has reached a milestone with its recent trials at BASF Antwerp. The trials focused on the reuse of reverse osmosis (RO) concentrate from the demineralization plant, aiming to enhance water recovery and reduce resource consumption.

Innovative Approach to Water Reuse

During the first phase of the BASF Antwerp trials, IMPROVED containers were deployed to explore methods to increase water recovery at Evides Industriewater’s newest demineralization plant. The demin plant utilizes double pass RO on softened Biesbosch surface water. A novel closed-circuit reverse osmosis (CCRO) design, patented by DuPont, was tested for reusing the first pass RO concentrate.

Uniquely modified for the AquaSPICE trials, the CCRO system demonstrated a substantial increase in water recovery. The implementation of CCRO on the RO brine boosted the overall recovery rate of the plant by 12%, from 85% to 97%. This improvement translates to a 12% reduction in Biesbosch water intake and a corresponding decrease in NaCl consumption for softener regeneration.

Environmental and Resource Benefits

The innovative approach not only enhances water recovery but also contributes to resource conservation. By reducing the intake of Biesbosch water by 12%, the trials indicate significant environmental benefits. Although the regeneration of softener resins with RO brine did not yield a measurable reduction in chemical consumption, the water savings are notable.

The AquaSPICE project continues to push the boundaries of water sustainability in the industrial sector. The successful implementation of CCRO at BASF Antwerp showcases the potential for scalable solutions that can be adopted industry-wide to improve water management and conservation practices.

Future Prospects

As the AquaSPICE project progresses, further trials and studies will be conducted to optimize these innovative approaches and evaluate their long-term benefits. The collaboration between industry leaders and research institutions, exemplified by this project, highlights the importance of joint efforts in tackling global water challenges.

For more detailed insights, the full report on the AquaSPICE case study at BASF Antwerp is now available, providing comprehensive data and analysis of the trial results.