Twente is experimenting with new ways to purify water

Water is an important theme worldwide. In our country too, and especially in Twente. Our sandy soils are high, and hot summers have repeatedly caused droughts. Then there is the fact that our water contains increasing amounts of contaminants, such as hormones, medicines, superfine plastic particles and remains of the coronavirus, for example. 

In short:

Twente is experimenting with new ways of purifying water. Various parties are working on new techniques with the Vechtstromen water board.
Using tap water for watering grass or flushing toilets? This water is way too precious for that. Jotem Water Treatment will be setting up a treatment plant in Vriezenveen, which will make sewage water suitable for such purposes.

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It is fortunate, therefore, that Twente is doing a lot of research into how these problems can be solved. For example, interesting experiments are being carried out on the sewage purification site in Glanerbrug, right behind the railway station. One hall houses the Water Experiment Center Twente (WECT). An initiative that came about four years ago, more or less by chance. A hall became available, there was budget and, above all, the desire to use this place for something good. The employees of the Vechtstromen Water Board also knew partners in the business community who were looking for space to test out installations.


And thus, WECT was founded: a living lab in the field of water purification. Here, the Gyro Gearlooses of Saxion and the University of Twente work together with skilled operators from companies such as Jotem, Pentair and NX Filtration on, among other things, the latest filter techniques for water purification. 

Bursting at the seams

Things are going well for WECT. Water management issues are becoming more complex and concern everyone, which makes collaboration and partnership increasingly important. WECT is spreading its wings and various test sites are being created in the area managed by the Vechtstromen water board, where purification techniques can be tested on a larger scale. NX Filtration recently placed a test installation with nano-filtration membranes along the Twente Canal: a sea container that sucks up spilled water from the canal on one side and has a tap on the other side from which you can get pure drinking water. This shows that it is already technically possible.

Power Up Your Poop

Several projects are emerging from the WECT living lab. A container, developed by Jotem Water Treatment, will be placed in Vriezenveen. This will have Power Up Your Poop (PUYP) written on it in large letters. Sewage water is purified there with an ingenious coffee filter so that it is suitable for flushing toilets or washing cars. 
The intention was that this installation would be used by the Ministry of Defence, to purify the wastewater from soldiers during their mission in Afghanistan. However, the installation will remain in Twente for the time being due to corona. WECT is creating a location where experience can be gained with both the installation and the operational management, and the 101st battalion of the engineer corps is being trained to work with this system at the same time. 
Another experiment is currently set up on the campus of the University of Twente. The UT used expensive tap water for watering the many (artificial) lawns there in summer, until recently. Excess rainwater is now stored in underground basins. However, this water is not yet suitable for sprinkling in times of drought. By first purifying it, the water quality is such that no algae growth or bacteria proliferation can occur.

Date: 26 April 2022 |

Source of tekst: Waterschap Vechtstromen |

Author: Maaike Thüss

Read more about: #waterzuivering