19 Sep The SALWATERTWIN project proposes an innovative solution for the local treatment of saline groundwater
SALWATERTWIN (AEI-010500-2022-60), an industrial research initiative, aims to design and validate at laboratory scale a small semi-autonomous plant that operates with low consumption using solar energy and in a decentralized manner to treat the problem of salinity in groundwater. The design of the plant will incorporate a digital twin that allows intelligent and as efficient management as possible and that can consider all the parameters that can be given in a real environment.
Saline intrusion into aquifers is an increasingly frequent phenomenon, often caused by the overexploitation of groundwater, and which compromises the availability of this resource with minimum quality margins for application in agricultural irrigation. At present, the opportunities for implementing desalination systems on a medium or small scale have not been properly explored and the technologies have generally been applied in large-scale plants and for the generation of water for urban uses or domestic In this context, the adoption of desalination technologies in groundwater with agricultural end uses is an emerging opportunity. Therefore, this industrial research study aims to study the applicability of these technologies in small or medium plants and to generate good quality water for irrigation from underground water with high salinity. The application of photovoltaic panels will reduce the operating costs of the plant related to energy consumption. In addition, the other highly innovative element of the SALTWATERTWIN project is the development of a digital twin (digital twin) applied to the treatment plant for the optimization of the design before the construction of the pilot, and later, of the operations, guaranteeing efficient plant management and a reduction in associated costs.
The project will be divided into a total of two phases: the first, currently underway, which will end in December 2022 and, throughout 2023, a development phase will begin with the construction of a pilot that will allow testing the solution and demonstrate its technical and economic viability. The final goal, at the end of the two phases, is to obtain a small, containerized plant that can be transported and operated in small or medium-sized farms, with an incorporated digital twin.