NX Filtration’s hollow fiber NF membranes enable autonomous drinking water production at Pampus

1 July 2020

NX Filtration’s hollow fiber nanofiltration membranes enable autonomous drinking water production at the fortress island of Pampus

At the fortress island Pampus in the IJmeer near Amsterdam, an innovative pilot installation has been put into operation to produce drinking water from IJmeer surface water. This installation provides a simple, cost-effective and sustainable alternative to traditional methods, avoiding the use of chemicals and reducing energy usage. It is an important step towards reaching self-sufficiency for the island of Pampus.

Tom Nouhuys, Director at Pampus, comments: “As a sea fortress island, Pampus was historically set-up to be fully self-sufficient to survive in years of combat. With this project we seek to return to self-sufficiency. Not only from a historical perspective, but also to avoid cost and emissions from having to ship water from the mainland to our island on a daily basis. We are proud that we can now produce our own drinking water from our surrounding IJmeer water.”

The process consists of three steps. First, the water passes through a sand filter to remove larger particles such as algae. As a second step the hollow fiber nanofiltration membranes remove the majority of bacteria, viruses, antibiotics, microplastics and other micropollutants as well as colour from the water. As a result, a very clear water enters the third step of the process, ultra violet (UV) treatment, providing optimal conditions to remove traces of the micropollutants.

The pilot system has been developed by a consortium of three parties. Jotem Waterbehandeling has developed the overall system, NX Filtration has delivered its hollow fiber nanofiltration membranes and Van Remmen UV Technology is responsible for the validated UV post treatment. Holland Nauta Maritime Watermakers, advised by Blue Wave Water, is responsible for the project management and Waternet, the water company for Amsterdam and surrounding area, advises on drinking water systems and regulations.

Erik Roesink, founder and business development manager at NX Filtration, comments: “Our new generation of hollow fiber nanofiltration membranes enable this simple and sustainable process of producing drinking water. Compared to traditional methods, we reduce the number of filtration steps and avoid the use of chemicals in the pre-treatment of the water. In addition, because our nanofiltration membranes are capable to remove colour from the water, the efficiency of the UV treatment is much improved which significantly reduces energy use.”

Rob Borgerink, CEO at Jotem Waterbehandeling, comments: “This is a unique example of a very simple, robust and sustainable way of producing drinking water. We are proud to demonstrate this technology as a viable alternative that can also be applied in larger installations in the future.”

Janine Wanders, R&D engineer at Van Remmen UV Technology, comments: “The introduction of direct nanofiltration allows our validated UV treatment step to be more efficient, as most of the colour from the water is already removed, the transmittance will increase significantly. The already very efficient UV system will in this case form a reliable second barrier in the process and makes this safe drinking water in a cost-effective and sustainable way.”

The installation has been in operation since April 2020.

Please click here for a short video on the pilot (in Dutch)

Erik Roesink
Founder and CTO