Australian technology helps to make Beijing ‘greener’

Siemens membrane bioreactor (MBR) technology, designed and manufactured at its global R&D and manufacturing facility in Windsor in Sydney’s west, is helping Beijing to meet its growing water demand.

Siemens has installed a membrane bioreactor system at the Beixiaohe Waste Water Treatment Plant, which is located in the north of Beijing, to supply the Olympic Park with recreational water and reuse water. It is part of China’s ‘Green Games’ strategy and goal to make its economy more sustainable.

Beijing has long been suffering from water shortages, with an average share of water resources per person of merely 300 m3, significantly less than the average Australian enjoys today.

The recently commissioned Memjet MBR system contains biological and membrane treatment, which treats waste water for reuse in the Olympic Village central area, fountains and lakes. With 4,864 MEMCOR membranes, the system is one of the largest of its kind in the world and will help the city of Beijing realise its goal of processing 90% of its wastewater, with 50% for recycle and reuse.

Siemens general manager water technologies, Tony Handakas, said the retrofitting of Siemens membrane bioreactor equipment to the waste water plant has enabled it to produce an additional 60,000 m3 of recycled water per day.

“Using the innovative membrane bioreactor technologies, output from the Beixiaohe Waste Water Plant has increased by 150%.

“Compared with the conventional waste water treatment technology, the membrane bioreactor system has less treatment stages and high removal efficiency while requiring 60 — 70% less land to install the technology,” Handakas said.

Beixiaohe was Beijing’s first modern waste water treatment plant and was completed in 1990.

Membrane biological reactors, also know as membrane bioreactor systems or MBRs, are a unique waste water treatment process designed for numerous municipal and industrial applications.

Membrane bioreactor systems may be used in such applications as water reuse, new housing developments, parks and resorts, retrofits and turnkey projects. The need to recycle wastewater and stricter environmental regulations make an MBR system a viable solution for current and future waste water treatment.

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