Ipsach lake water plant wins innovation prize from InfraWatt


Yverdon-les-Bains VD/Biel BE – Energie Service Biel/Bienne has received this year’s Innovation Award from InfraWatt. The energy company received an award for the conversion of the Ipsach lake water plant. Here, chemicals are avoided during water treatment and energy is saved.

Every year, InfraWatt honors the implementation of exemplary energy systems with an innovation award. This year, the prize went to Energie Service Biel/Bienne(ESB), informs the association for the use of energy from wastewater, waste, waste heat and drinking water in a statement. The energy company from Biel was awarded for its project Seewasserwerk Ipsach: Energy recovery in the reverse osmosis stage.

In the project to replace the existing lake water plant, ESB wants to halve the already low trace substance content of the drinking water again. For this purpose, the company uses the process technology of reverse osmosis. Here, unwanted substances are removed from the water by forcing it through a semipermeable membrane under high pressure.

At the Ipsach lake power plant, ESB does not use any chemical additives, so-called antiscalants. In addition, the pressure of the discarded water is transferred to the water fed into the plant via a hydraulic energy recovery system. This will save about 740 megawatt hours annually, or 36 percent of the plant’s total electricity consumption, according to the release.

“The jury was impressed by the innovative character of the project and the efforts to ensure that new standards are set in terms of both drinking water quality and energy efficiency,” writes InfraWatt. The association, which was founded in 2010 by the professional associations SVGW, VFS, VBSA and VSA and has its headquarters in Yverdon-les-Bains, also attests to the project’s exemplary function for other water utilities. ce/hs