Aquifer storage and recovery in saline underground
In early 2012, a successful pilot starts up at a horticulturalist’s in Nootdorp. Rainwater is captured and stored in the brackish underground. KWR develops a new well design that increases recovery yields three-fold.
Additional fresh water is required for our agriculture, horticulture, industry and drinking water in periods of drought. We therefore store freshwater surpluses during wet periods in aquifers underground to recover them later during dry periods (aquifer storage and recovery, “ASR”). However in coastal areas the aquifers are salinized, and recovering fresh water after storage is complicated. This is why KWR is conducting research into innovative ASR set-ups. The research is being partly financed by the Knowledge for Climate programme and stakeholders like the province, waterboards and the horticultural sector.
Sufficient fresh water year-round
Researchers are carrying out model calculations as well as field trials – for example, of new types of wells, in which fresh water can be injected deep in the aquifer and recovered at its top. The recovery yield of such wells is much higher. In the first field trials at an orchid grower’s in Nootdorp, the water recovery yield increased from less than 20% to 60% – more than enough to supply the grower with fresh water year-round. During the course of 2013, another two promising field trials, using other techniques, will get under way.
© 2017 KWR Watercycle Research Institute