Technology demonstration in a laboratory
Tim Naughton, co-founder and Chief Technical Officer, Salinity Solutions, demonstrating the company's water treatment technology

Suez, a global leader in environmental services, and spinout Salinity Solutions, an engineering technology company based in Birmingham (UK), have signed an agreement to pilot an innovative reverse osmosis system at a fully operational wastewater treatment plant in France.

Salinity Solutions was formed as a spinout from the University of Birmingham in April 2021 and developed HyBatchTM, a ground-breaking batch reverse osmosis (RO) technology – the first in the world to be manufactured commercially – has been developed to reduce the environmental impact of water treatment. Salinity’s system uses less energy, purifies a higher amount of wastewater, generates less waste, and is more compact than traditional RO systems.

I’m delighted to formalise this partnership with Suez which is a tremendous milestone for our company. With global water demand set to double over the next five years, efficient wastewater reuse is essential. Water treatment currently consumes 4% of the world’s total electricity production and conventional reverse osmosis systems are energy intensive. Working with Suez, we can bring significant energy and water savings to the municipal sector and other industries.

Richard Bruges, CEO, Salinity Solutions

Following successful lab trials and a scale-up study over the last 18 months, Suez has ordered a unit to be installed later this year. The aim of the pilot is to evaluate how HyBatch – which was initially trialled as a method of concentrating and extracting minerals from brackish flows – can improve on conventional reverse osmosis, to remove salts and contaminants such as pharmaceuticals, heavy metals and PFAS from wastewater.

Jörg Linsenmaier, Executive Vice President for Suez Engineering and Construction and Member of Executive Committee: “Suez is constantly seeking ways to enable customers to provide access to water services with resilient and innovative solutions. The aim of this partnership is to optimise the re-use of a high-quality wastewater to increase the availability of water, while simultaneously reducing energy and chemical usage.

The advanced treatment solution will contribute to promoting wastewater as a new resource, particularly in coastal regions such as the Mediterranean that are exposed to saline intrusion into groundwater resources and sewer networks.