The project team of CuveWaters, led by ISOE – the Institute for Social-Ecological Research, has succeeded in turning wastewater into a resource in this most arid region of the world, so that processed wastewater from sanitary facilities can be used for agricultural purposes.
Communal sanitation facility in Outapi/Namibia
The project partners TU Darmstadt (Institute IWAR), Bilfinger Water Technologies and the ISOE are presenting the sanitation concept at the 9th IWA International Water-Reuse Conference in Windhoek/Namibia.
Approximately 850,000 people live in central northern Namibia. About 40 percent of the population in urban areas don’t have access to adequate sanitary facilities. In order to improve the sometimes dramatic situation for the population, the „Namibian Sanitation Strategy“ recommends using efficient flushing toilets in conjunction with innovative wastewater technologies.
As a result, the CuveWaters team has developed a novel sanitation concept plus vacuum system within the framework of an integrated water resources management (IWRM): The sanitary facilities are part of a complex disposal, treatment and re-use system that has been developed together with the local population and with Namibian partners from government and industry.
Energy efficient: Sanitation concept with water re-use in Outapi
The small city of Outapi (Omusati Region) was chosen as the site to implement the sanitation system with water re-use. It is home to 4,600 people, of whom 1,500 have been using the new sanitary facilities in a pilot plant since the beginning of 2013. The official handover of this plant to the municipal administration is now coming up on November 1st. The energy-efficient sanitation and wastewater concept in Outapi works this way: A vacuum system transports the wastewater from settlements in Outapi to a processing plant, where it is purified.
A multi-step purification process produces hygienically impeccable irrigation water. Together with the nutrients, the purified water is then used in the fields. A farmers’ cooperative works this land and sells the crops at local markets. Biogas is also won in the course of the purification process, which is used to generate power and heat. This covers a percentage of the operating energy of the vacuum canalisation and the wastewater treatment plant.
Promoting millennium goals through the transfer of technology and knowledge
The innovative concept isn’t just ideal for small rural settlements, but also opens up completely new perspectives for rapidly growing urban areas in particular. Within this context it is vitally important to involve the local population, as well as training and educating them. “Together with the ‚Community Health Clubs‘ which have arisen locally and which help people with hygiene issues, CuveWaters also makes sure that knowledge transfer takes place, in addition to technology transfer,” says project leader Thomas Kluge (ISOE).
The cultivation of agricultural areas also opens up new sources of income for farmers. “Altogether, this allows us to improve the living conditions of the population over the long term and make a contribution to reaching the millennium goals, which also include safeguarding health.”
CuveWaters will be presenting its project results together with the Outapi city administration at the Water Reuse Conference 2013 in Windhoek. CuveWaters is a joint project of ISOE in Frankfurt am Main/Germany and the Technische Universität Darmstadt/Ger¬many. It is being funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF). Namibian cooperation partners include the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry (MAWF), Outapi Town Council and the Desert Research Foundation of Namibia (DRFN).
CuveWaters at the IWA Reuse Conference in Windhoek, October 28th-31th 2013Contact in Namibia:
Dr. Nicola Schuldt-Baumgart | idw
Upcycling of PET Bottles: New Ideas for Resource Cycles in Germany
25.06.2018 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Betriebsfestigkeit und Systemzuverlässigkeit LBF
Dry landscapes can increase disease transmission
20.06.2018 | Forschungsverbund Berlin e.V.
A new manufacturing technique uses a process similar to newspaper printing to form smoother and more flexible metals for making ultrafast electronic devices.
The low-cost process, developed by Purdue University researchers, combines tools already used in industry for manufacturing metals on a large scale, but uses...
For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.
To rule out other origins with certainty, the team led by neutrino physicist Elisa Resconi from the Technical University of Munich and multi-wavelength...
For the first time a team of researchers have discovered two different phases of magnetic skyrmions in a single material. Physicists of the Technical Universities of Munich and Dresden and the University of Cologne can now better study and understand the properties of these magnetic structures, which are important for both basic research and applications.
Whirlpools are an everyday experience in a bath tub: When the water is drained a circular vortex is formed. Typically, such whirls are rather stable. Similar...
Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.
A frequently used reaction in organic chemistry is nucleophilic substitution. It plays, for example, an important role in in the synthesis of new chemical...
Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.
"Put an excitation into the system and observe how it evolves." According to physicist Professor Tobias Brixner, this is the credo of optical spectroscopy....
13.07.2018 | Event News
12.07.2018 | Event News
03.07.2018 | Event News
20.07.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering
20.07.2018 | Information Technology
20.07.2018 | Materials Sciences