Wetsus wins stage 2 of the George Barley Water Prize
Today it was announced that Wetsus is the winner of stage 2 of the George Barley Water Prize. The team, led by Leon Korving, wins 50.000 dollar. After winning the first 2 stages, the Wetsus team now enters the third. There will be four stages, the last one operating the full system in Florida. The winner of that stage receives the prize of 10 million dollar.
A Wetsus team had submitted this solution to recover phosphorus from surface water in the Everglades (Florida, USA), as part of the first stage of the George Barley prize contest. The George Barley prize (www.barleyprize.com) is organized by the Everglades Foundation in their search to find cost-effective solutions to remove and recover phosphorus from surface water. There is a high demand in Florida for such a technology, as it would make it possible to restore the natural water flow through the Everglades and prevent toxic algae blooms at the coasts of Florida.
Challenging demands have been set for the new technology. It should remove phosphorus to ultra low concentrations (10 ppb) with a very minimal footprint and at cost of less than 120$/kg P. Wetsus proposed their NaFRAd-solution which is a combination of flocculation with natural flocculants and reversible adsorption with high capacity iron based adsorbents. In this way both particulate and soluble phosphorus can be removed with minimal waste formation. The phosphorus can be recovered as phosphate rock that can be used in the local fertilizer industry. These technologies find their origin in the Wetsus research themes Phosphate Recovery and Natural Flocculants.