Application of Biobased Chemicals

Evides Industriewater strives to minimize the impact of its activities. That is why EIW is investigating sustainable alternatives to chemicals produced from fossil raw materials.

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Proof of the pudding

The advantage of using sustainable alternatives to chemicals is that we lower our CO2 impact, make storage and use safer and increase the performance of our installations. After all, the application in practice is 'the proof of the pudding'.

What is the problem

Fouling of reversed osmosis (RO) membranes is always a hot topic. The fouling impacts negatively on e.g. energy consumption, cleaning frequency, lifetime and security of supply. So controlling fouling in a sustainable way is the issue at hand.


What we have done


Cosun Beet Company – Biobased Experts (CBE) and Evides Industriewater (EIW) have been cooperating for more than 3 years on the research of applying biobased chemicals in the EIW processes.


One of the biobased alternatives is carboxymethyl inulin. This molecule, known for its threshold scale inhibition properties, is manufactured by CBE. The inulin backbone of the molecule is extracted from chicory root. During the test schemes the properties of CMI were investigated and consequently tested in various RO membranes.

Partners guestimated that the fouling potential could be suppressed with the use of CMI. With what efficacy this could work out, was unclear in the beginning. Based on these starting points, one production line in the DWP Botlek facility (the largest manufacturing facility for deionized water of Western Europe) was treated with positive and surprising results. One take away was the significantly lowered CIP frequency upon using CMI. Upon treatment with CMI of a second production line, using a different membrane make, it became clear that the same results were achieved.


At the DWP Botlek facility it was clearly demonstrated that CMI contributes to avoidance of microbiological fouling. Given the improvements on processability, operational excellence and operational expenditure the full scale application of CMI will be implemented.

The pros of this type of biobased chemistries versus conventional antiscalant chemistries are broad and consist a.o. of circularity, biobased nature, biodegradability, aquatic toxicity and employee safety. And next to the drastically lowered CIP frequency also the CO2-footprint of the entire operations improved.