Cadagua is developing the Marine Phytoplankton Detection project, in collaboration with the Technological Institute of Galicia, the Institute for Agri-Food Technology and Research and Ferrovial, which consists of the design and development of a Phytoplankton pilot early warning system in water intake of desalination plants, in order to be able to detect the presence of these phenomena sufficiently in advance and with a reliability of over 90%.
The presence of marine phytoplankton causes major operational problems in seawater reverse osmosis water desalination plants, and depending on the magnitude of the Bloom can cause total shutdown of the facility since it is impossible to maintain adequate water quality for supply to RO (Reverse Osmosis) frames.
Although specific pre-treatments are available to deal with these phenomena, their operation is usually expensive, so they should only be used in situations where they are really necessary. Usually, the decision to use such equipment is made after visual inspections of the area, with the consequent possibility of committing errors derived from such inspection, and which have a significant impact on the operating costs associated with such equipment.
The availability of more reliable information on the temporal probability of the presence of phytoplankton at the entrance of the desalination plant, as well as a quantification of its magnitude, would allow the equipment to be set up more efficiently, with consequent cost savings.
About Marine Phytoplankton Detection project
The result of this project will enable the design and implementation of a pilot kit for detection of algae blooms, transferable to any other zone, with a minimum of calibration work on the models developed for the area and selected point of interest.
The marine phytoplankton detection project was born from collaboration between Cadagua and Ferrovial through the Digital Hub.
The Digital Hub is an open collaboration space where Business and Innovation and a group of experts in diverse technologies belonging to the General Directorate of Systems work together collaboratively as well as with external entities for the identification and implementation of digital initiatives.
This project is an example of the collaboration in which, in addition to the internal team formed by Cadagua, Ferrovial and the ITG Technological Centre also collaborate.