Algae are an important food source for aqua- tic ecosystems, but too many algae result in vast ecological and economic damage. Algae masses in freshwater systems are triggered by too much phosphate in the water.
Aquacare provides innovative cost-effective tech- nology to remove excess phosphate from water.
All living organisms require phosphorus. Higher phosphorus availability through fertilizer, more than 80% of today’s worldwide phosphorus use, increases agricultural crops. Phosphate fertilizer remains essential to feed the world in the future.
While demand for phosphate continues to grow, phosphate rock is a limited and non-renewable resource - projected to become exhausted by the end of this century.
Algae blooms cause ecological harm. They can lead to fish kills. Seagrass, an important nursery for many marine life, dies off in coastal zones as light cannot reach the bottom anymore, with far reaching consequences for the ecosystem.
Many algae blooms produce toxins that can harm livestock, dogs, and even humans when in contact with the waters.
Economic damage goes into the billions of dollars in fisheries, recreational, and tourism industries. Long-term pilot test at a wastewater plant with P inflow up to 1,800 ppb showed consistently low P outflow over 160 days.
Over the last years and with Dutch partners, we developed our BioPhree® technology that decrea- ses phosphorus concentrations to less than 10 ppb even under high-phosphorus inflow. Long-term field tests demonstrated BioPhree® efficiency.
A series of absorption vessels containing the BioPhree® materials capture phosphorus from the influent water. A pretreatment such as a sand filter might be used in the case of high suspended solids. The effluent with less than 10 ppb P remains otherwise chemically and physically unchanged.
BioPhree® will capture all phosphorus until the material is saturated — depending on system size in days to weeks to months. Upon saturation, the phosphorus will be washed off the material by a cleaning solution, rendering the BioPhree® material continually reusable. This regeneration process takes about two hours.
To ensure continuous operation during the rege- neration, several BioPhree® units are run in paral- lel and continue to clean water while one unit at a time is regenerated.
The concentrated phosphorus is recaptured in solid form from the cleaning solution. The cleaning solution becomes reusable in the next regenerati- on cycle with minimal losses. The recovered phosphorus can be brought to re-application, e.g. as fertilizer.
BioPhree® systems are economically scalable from low-volume industrial and use-water applica- tions over agricultural runoff to large- scale natural surface waters.
A one million gallons per day (156 m3/h) unit can behousedina10ft(3m)heightby10ft(3m) diameter tank.
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