The winner of the Aquatech Innovation Award 2008 is the Pharmafilter concept for processing hospital wastewater. The award was presented to Grontmij Nederland and Pharmafilter BV during the opening ceremony of Aquatech Amsterdam 2008, the world’s leading exhibition in the process, drinking and wastewater technology sectors.
The expert jury praised the new concept for the way it combines all waste streams within a hospital rather than being restricted to water purification alone. The core principle is that the various waste streams are centrally digested with organic waste, which together supplies significantly more sustainable biogas energy. The Pharmafilter is therefore a solution for three environmental challenges: clean water, reducing waste and countering climate change.
During the opening of the Aquatech Amsterdam 2008 exhibition on Sept. 29, jury chairman Cees Buisman also handed out the specific category awards to Severn Trent Services for its Smartmeter, Austcorp Water Technology for its Rainpure purification system and IPCO for its Ezidig cable detection.
Pharmafilter is an American-patented purification system from Pharmafilter Co. The concept of fermentation (anaerobic digestion) and wastewater purification is currently being further developed by environmental and engineering consultancy firm Grontmij and the Reinier de Graaf hospital in Delft, Netherlands, with a focus on the processing of hospital waste. Disposable bedpans made of bioplastics, their contents and kitchen refuse are placed in a shredder. The mix of bioplastic, urine and leftover food is processed in a digester tank and converted to biogas.
The remaining wastewater is purified in a membrane bioreactor, while ozonation and activated carbon remove every trace of medicines and hormone disrupting agents. A trial installation is currently being tested at the Delft hospital.
The other winners are:
Process Control & Automation: Severn Trent Services with the SmartMeter SM150VR+, a water meter that takes a reading from the front door of a house without having to go inside, then writes and prints out a bill on the spot;
Point of Use: Austcorp Water Technology with the Rainpure RM20: Water purification system for offices and houses based on vaporization; and
Transport & Storage: IPCO with EziDig: A detection system for use with excavators that immediately signals the presence of underground metal pipes.