Aigües de Barcelona starts river water treatment pilot in Barcelona

Aigües de Barcelona, the company responsible for managing the water cycle in the metropolitan area of Barcelona, Spain, has started a series a pilot projects with NX Filtration’s direct nanofiltration (dNF) membranes. The objective of the first pilot project is to treat water from the Llobregat river in Barcelona to produce drinking water.

Since Barcelona is situated in a water stressed and densely populated region, Aigües de Barcelona has identified the dNF membranes of NX Filtration as an innovative technology that can significantly simplify the treatment of their surface waters. These surfaces water have posed challenges due to their variability in quality, mainly due to seasonal impacts.

The pilot will target the reduction of processing steps, reduced energy and chemicals consumption and address the issue of limited space. As such, Aigües de Barcelona aims for more production of drinking water with less resources through achieving better recoveries with a smaller footprint than the current conventional technologies used.

Eva León González, innovation, investigation and technology manager at Aigües de Barcelona, said: “Compared to conventional water treatment technologies, dNF could provide high quality water whilst reducing the number of filtration steps, thus simplifying the treatment of surface water and saving space. In addition, this technology also provides various advantages in terms of sustainability, as it reduces energy consumption and avoids the use of pre-treatment chemicals.”

The pilot campaign is based on NX Filtration’s Mexpert pilot system and is expected to run for approximately 15 months. Aigües de Barcelona will continue to promote innovation projects through partnerships to advance the ecological and social transition, prepare for future challenges, and improve the quality of life of people and the health of the planet.

Alejandro Roman, CCO for NX Filtration, concluded: “Jointly, we are also exploring other sites and applications for deploying our technology in addressing water quality and water availability challenges. Wastewater reuse being one area already planned into this piloting campaign with Aigües de Barcelona.”