The power of collaboration

An innovation like Kaumera can only be successful if you work together with competent partners. And this is exactly what the Kaumera organization has been doing for years together with the machine and plant manufacturer and solution provider GEA. GEA supplies the two centrifuges that are essential for the extraction process.

GEA technology plays an important role

Dr. Birte Clason, GEA Senior Process Engineer for the Business Line Environment, has been involved in the project since 2017. "We supply the mechanical preparation in the process. The final process step in the disk centrifuge in particular is crucial for the quality of the Kaumera," reports Dr. Clason. "We have worked consistently on this step over the last two to three years to find out how we can optimize it. We want to improve the quality of the Kaumera so that it precisely meets the customer's requirements.”
"What makes this collaboration special, is the open and equal attitude in the project discussions," says Dr. Clason. "When we proposed a solution, the Kaumera team pointed out potential obstacles and challenges. We then worked with them to overcome them," she says. And she talks about practical experience: "When we bring our devices to the factory in Zutphen, the people there help us to connect it to their installation. This allows us to test changes directly on site and discuss the results together. It's a fruitful collaboration in which we help each other."

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Always choose the optimal solution

Mark Smit is R&D Engineer/Manager Operations at Kaumera. He is also enthusiastic about the collaboration: "GEA's vision is very much in line with that of the water authority. We are looking for new ways to recover resources from the treatment process. In this way, we produce cleaner water, reduce our carbon footprint and create added value from streams that were previously considered waste. One of the examples is Kaumera, which we extract from aerobic granular sludge at our production facility in Zutphen."

He continues: "As an R&D engineer, my role centers around refining the Kaumera extraction process. Each adjustment we make directly impacts GEA’s cutting-edge equipment. The team from GEA is dedicated to find the best technical solutions, even when faced with challenges. One critical component we are currently enhancing is the disk centrifuge. To accommodate greater capacity, we are conducting tests with an alternative disk centrifuge. This thorough exploration will guide us towards the optimal solution. Such an extensive study provides a wealth of knowledge. Together with GEA, we are gaining extensive knowledge about the Kaumera extraction technology, which we may be able to use worldwide."

A look into the future

"During our meetings, we sometimes also develop new ideas that benefit not only Kaumera, but the entire water treatment industry. So who knows what the future will bring if we continue to join our expertise," says Mark Smit, looking to the future.

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Since 1893, GEA has been building centrifuges that combine maximum separation efficiency, throughput and availability with minimum energy and water consumption. Based on our experience from more than 3500 process applications and the rapid translation of innovations into marketable products, GEA centrifugal separation technology offers profitable answers to some of the most pressing issues of our time. Only the most efficient use of resources can ensure quality of life without jeopardizing the basis for future generations. Sustainable growth - that is the goal of centrifugal separation technology from GEA.