Water technology company Xylem has won an $8-million contract to develop and supply customised technologies to a wastewater treatment and reclamation plant in Sulaibiya, Kuwait.
Following a plant expansion currently underway, it will be one of the largest water reclamation facilities of its kind in the world, said a statement.
Kuwait’s average rainfall is less than 120 mm annually. Groundwater is the main naturally occurring water resource, providing 36 per cent of Kuwait’s annual water supply, including 90 per cent of the water used for irrigation and landscaping.
This resource, however, is overexploited, depleting rapidly and subject to pollution from various sources such as oil exploration and refining, use of insecticides, pesticides and fertilisers in agriculture; landfill sites, industrial and commercial operations and contamination of the soil by hydrocarbons during the 1991 Gulf War.
The expanded facility will serve the growing irrigation needs of the southern and western Kuwait catchment areas, treating 600,000 cu m of wastewater per day. It will use ultra-filtration (UF) and reverse osmosis (RO) as tertiary treatment and for polishing.
Vincent Chirouze, regional director for Xylem’s Middle East and Africa region, said: “We are delighted to be playing a key role in the expansion of what will be one of the largest water reclamation plants of its kind in the world.
“In conjunction with Kharafi National, the project contractor, our optimised solution during secondary treatment will help create an efficient and effective system that will deliver clean reusable water to this arid, water-challenged region.”
Xylem will supply highly efficient and reliable treatment technologies for use during secondary treatment at the plant, including the company’s Sanitaire fine bubble aeration technologies, Flygt ultra low-head pumps and low-speed mixers, aeration blowers, stainless steel air mains and Flygt Jet aerators in the aerobic digesters, said the statement.
These technologies will ensure adequate secondary effluent quality for further treatment and polishing during tertiary stage, it said.
Dimitris Anagnostopoulos, project director for Kharafi National, said: “We are looking forward to the implementation of various equipment performance and optimisation concepts that Xylem’s engineering and research and development (R&D) teams have developed. Xylem’s willingness and commitment to join hands with Kharafi National and help us to expedite the project execution phase is commendable.”
Xylem has invested in a number of facilities across the region, including a local manufacturing plant and offices in the UAE, Oman and Qatar.
Chirouze said: “The water-energy nexus is especially relevant throughout the Mena region. We view the low oil price environment as an opportunity to invest and expand in this market. As the Middle East works hard to address long-term water security in the region, we are positioning ourselves for long-term growth and success.”
At the International Water Summit (IWS) 2016, Xylem and the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology had announced a research collaboration to establish sustainability indicators such as energy and cost performance of processes and equipment for water transport and treatment facilities.