Biobased Products for Water Treatment

To keep water fit for purpose, fossil based water treatment products are commonly used that are nonsustainable, toxic, and non-biodegradable. They are difficult to remove from the water and may end up in the environment, causing significant environmental damage. Wageningen Food & Biobased Research develops suitable alternatives: high-performance water treatment products that are nature-based, environmentally friendly and cost effective.

Environmentally friendly water treatment

Industrial companies, including food companies, datacentres and paper industry, use large amounts of water for processing, heating and cooling. To make water fit for this purpose, chemicals are added. For example, zinc compounds, polyacrylates, phosphonates, phosphates, polyacrylamides and alkoxylates prevent corrosion, scaling and pollution. To control growth of microorganisms, also large amounts of biocides are being used. The major drawback of all these substances is that they are toxic, mostly non-degradable and very difficult to remove from the water. As a result, they can lead to significant environmental damage. There is a need to replace these chemicals by sustainable, environmentally friendly alternatives that are cost-efficient and perform equally well, or better.

Valuable products derived from biomass

Wageningen Food & Biobased Research has extensive experience in the development of biodegradable and sustainable water treatment substances that inhibit corrosion, prevent fouling and remove pollution. We use various types of biomass waste and side streams as feedstock. The resulting substances cause no environmental damage, contribute to the transition to a circular and biobased economy, reduce CO2 emissions and prevent further climate change. Besides, nature-based agents have the potential to perform better and to be more effective than petrochemically derived water treatment substances, e.g., by capturing solids in the natural branched polymer structure. Consequently, less maintenance is required.

We also have extensive technological knowledge in the field of control of microbial growth and can electrochemically produce biocides like hydrogen peroxide on-site, thereby decreasing environmental impact of biocidal agents.

Biobased flocculants

Previous projects of Wageningen Food & Biobased Research have shown that it is technically possible to flocculate pollutants using products derived from natural polymers. These polymers bind harmful substances efficiently, making them easier to remove from the water. Various sources and modification routes are successfully explored to provide flocculation in a variety of water compositions in wastewater applications.

Looking for partners

Are you looking for sustainable, climate and environmentally friendly and cost-efficient water treatment solutions? Together, we will review the options available for your business and work out the best solution based on biobased products. Contact us for details.