dws-iww-opening-ceremony-aquatech-award-buisman-laarman-770pxHumVi Liquid technology from Dutch water supply company Vitens is the overall winner of the Aquatech Innovation Award 2013. This was announced during the opening ceremony of the International Water Week and Aquatech 2013 trade exhibition in Amsterdam on 4 November.

The award honours the most pioneering product, service or solution in the field of water technology as entered by Aquatech exhibitors.

Project manager Alexander Laarman (right on top photo) of Vitens' Business Development received the Aquatech Innovation Award. He felt very honoured to win the award. "We are able to turn waste into something with value. For us as a water supply company, it is very remarkable to make a product, a fertilizer, for another sector."

Next to the overall winner, X-Flow/Pentair, Lacroix Sofrel, Unisense A/S and Mekorot National Water all won a category award.

Recovery from drinking water treatment
The winning product HumVi Liquid is a fulvic/humic acid product. Vitens developed a technology to filter and process this substance as a by-product from its drinking water treatment. At several production locations Vitens uses ion exchange to remove humus acids from the ground water. Normally the humus fraction is considered waste and disposed of.

Vitens discovered a process to turn the humus fraction into a fertilizing product that can be used in the agricultural sector. The application increases crop yields and reduces the use of pesticides and fertilizers such as phosphor, which directly benefits the farmer.

dws-iww-opening-ceremony-aquatech-award-buisman-bergkamp-350pxHigh value product
According to the jury, the HumVi Liquid is a genuinely exciting breakthrough. "We're used to seeing resource recovery technologies being developed in the waste water treatment sector", said professor Cees Buisman (left on top photo) at the award ceremony.

Buisman is chair of the jury and scientific director of Wetsus centre of excellence for sustainable water technology.

"This is rare in the drinking water field and has never been seen on this scale before. I live in the area of the Netherlands where this technology was trailed and we've always had brown water. Now we have normal clear drinking water while the removed substances are being sold as a high value product to farmers. This is the essence of a win-win situation", explained Buisman.

Other category winners
• water treatment: HumVi Liquid – Vitens, Netherlands
• waste water treatment:  Anaerobic MBR - X-Flow (Pentair), Netherlands
• transport and storage: Sofrel LT US – LaCroix Sofrel, France
• process control technology & process automation:  N2O wastewater system - Unisense A/S, Denmark
• Not yet to market: Early biofouling detection biosensor – Mekorot National Water, Israel

The Aquatech Innovation Award sponsors AMREF Flying Doctors. This year’s funding will contribute to the project 'Sustainable Water Access for the Masai in Kajiado, Kenya'. This project aims at providing the local community with better access to clean (drinking) water and to decrease water sanitation and hygiene related diseases.

(photos by NWP/Rob Kamminga)

Read more on IWW/Aquatech on this site
Meet the Dutch water sector in Amsterdam!
IWW/Aquatech: Pitch battle for entrepreneurs with highly innovative water technology solutions, 4 November 2013
IWW/Aquatech Amsterdam 2013: Captains of industry to debate water use in the full product cycle, 22 October 2013
Aquatech Amsterdam 2013 trade exhibition unveils nominees Innovation Awards, 9 October 2013
New UNSGAB Chair Prince El Hassan Bin Talal keynote speaker at International Water Week, the Netherlands, 16 Augustus 2013
International Water Week Amsterdam 2013 seeks inspiring water solutions for a green economy, 14 May 2013

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