Nuoro designs water treatment pilots for VITO to test water recovery solutions in Flanders.


The containerized systems feature cutting-edge membrane filtration technology and will play an important role in VITO’s water treatment and recovery research as of the summer of 2023.

As the effects of climate change and human activities are impacting the quality and availability of fresh water, the need for action is urgent. Flanders in particular, with its high population density and intensive industrial and agricultural activities, is facing a big challenge. To ensure a robust water system, a circular model needs to be embraced, where water is treated to be re-used. Alternative water sources, like rainwater, are also considered. At the same time, the quality of groundwater, surface water and drinking water need to be improved. PFAS, pesticides, pharmaceuticals and antibiotics: the list of contaminants threatening health and environment is endless. On the bright side: a range of technological solutions is available to tackle these challenges and Flanders is on the foreground of technological innovation when it comes to water treatment.

To expand their research capabilities and test innovative technologies for water reuse in the field, VITO WaterClimateHub now invests in a fleet of state-of-the-art pilot plants. The units will further treat and upgrade used process water and so-called bio-effluent of domestic and industrial wastewater treatment facilities, as well as rainwater. Each containerized water treatment system will be equipped with a dedicated technology, required for the removal of specific contaminants or to reach a desired water quality. The different technologies can be combined and deployed in several configurations, all designed and optimized to treat a particular type of water and to produce water fit-for-purpose.

"With Nuoro, we found a partner with the required technical know-how and expertise to realise this exciting project."

For the design, engineering and realisation of the pilot units, VITO WaterClimateHub chose Antwerp-based environmental engineering company Nuoro. For this specific project, Nuoro has made a custom design of 5 independent modular units, allowing maximum flexibility. The units can be deployed individually or together as a treatment train. This will allow pilot testing of a wide variety of treatment options, depending on the specific circumstances and objectives. Each unit is completely automated, IIOT-connected, and packed with high-end instrumentation to produce valuable data to be interpreted by VITO’s scientists.


The technologies:

The project kicked off in October this year with the validation of the technological set-up of the units. Currently detailed engineering is ongoing, making the containerized plants ready for construction early 2023. First deployment is scheduled for summer of 2023.

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About VITO


VITO is an independent Flemish research organisation in the area of cleantech and sustainable development. The Flemish Government has chosen VITO as scientific partner for the Blue Deal, an ambitious program to proactively reduce the chance of water scarcity in Flanders. With specialized R&D activities in innovative water technologies and the WaterClimateHub in Ostend, VITO plays a key role in the Flemish water transition. To expand their research capabilities and test innovative technologies for water reuse in the field, VITO has now decided to invest in a fleet of high-tech pilot plants.


Contact VITO: Karen Vanderstraeten – –

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