TRIHSENS: Preventive strategies to improve water quality

The TRIHSENS project has demonstrated an innovative solution for real-time monitoring and control of drinking water quality at the Tambre Drinking Water Treatment Plant (DWTP) in Santiago de Compostela (Spain). Within the framework of this project, a low-cost integrated solution has been developed for detecting and providing early warning of the presence of contaminants in drinking water. This innovative solution will enable DWTP operating personnel to make operational decisions more quickly, more accurately and more reliably, thereby further improving the quality of the water. The project was carried out by a multidisciplinary team from four companies: VIAQUA, ROCA ROIBÁS, SYSPRO AUTOMATION and AYCO INTERNET; and two technology centres: AIMEN and CETAQUA Galicia.

Ander Castro Fernández. Researcher, CETAQUA
Teresa Alvariño Pereira. Project manager, CETAQUA
Fundación Centro Gallego de Investigaciones del Agua
Susana González Blanco. Technical Director of Critical Infrastructure Management and Resilience, CETAQUA
Santiago Gómez Cuervo. Technical Environmental Researcher, AIMEN Technology Centre
Miguel Placer Lorenzo. Junior Technical Specialist in Smart Systems & Smart Manufacturing, AIMEN Technology Centre
Francisco Rodríguez Lorenzo. Technical Specialist in Smart Systems & Smart Manufacturing, AIMEN Technology Centre
Leticia Rodríguez-Hernández. Director of Sustainable Development, Viaqua
Diana Peleteiro Higuero. DWTP Director, VIAQUA

Drinking water disinfection is a treatment process necessary to reduce the risk of waterborne disease transmission. There are a number of different disinfection processes in existence, most of which are based on organic matter oxidation processes, such as ozonisation or chlorination. In Spain, chlorination is the most commonly implemented process for water disinfection, due to its low cost and carryover effects, which allows water quality to be maintained throughout the supply network. Chlorination must be carried out in a controlled manner to prevent the formation of intermediate products resulting from the combination of chlorine with other compounds (e.g., traces of organic matter), which would adversely affect the final quality of the water.

Spanish legislation sets out a number of requirements for these processes in Royal Decree RD 140/2003, with the aim of ensuring compliance with sanitary drinking water quality parameters. The most common way of monitoring these parameters is through manual sampling and complex analytical techniques. This corrective strategy is time-consuming and involves high analysis costs, which increases operating costs associated with water disinfection. In addition, the need to wait for the results of laboratory analyses prevents operating personnel from responding rapidly to incidents.

TRIHSENS offers an online solution for drinking water quality control

Published in: Nº79 FuturENVIRO April – May 2021