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2015|16 Annual Report Fraunhofer IGB

22 RESEARCH – COLLABORATIONS AND PROJECTS Expanded Water Check water-testing system Fraunhofer IGB has been analyzing water samples from private households for ten years through a Germany-wide study with Austrian company AQA. “Water Check” is a water-testing system that uses state-of-the-art chemical and physical tech- niques to analyze 24 important parameters of water including metal content, trace elements, and salts. AQA and Fraunhofer IGB decided last year to expand Water Check to include bacteriological tests. This will enable consumers to have their drinking water investigated for the presence of bacteria like Escherichia coli, enterococci, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa as well. You can also read the report about this on p. 118. New Fraunhofer lighthouse project: “Electricity as a raw material” The energy transition and expansion of renewable distrib- uted power generation will make cost-effective, though weather-dependent electricity from wind power and solar installations available in the future. If the excess electricity from these fluctuating sources can be used for electrochemi- cal reactions while at the same time utilizing CO2 as a source of carbon, then basic industrial chemicals can be sustainably manufactured that previously used petroleum. This is where the Fraunhofer Lighthouse project entitled “Electricity as a Raw Material” comes in, begun at the end of October 2015. Fraunhofer IGB is coordinating the development of a new one-step process in the project with which ethylene will be electrochemically manufactured from CO2 and water. You can find additional information in the report on page ePhos® – First licensing agreement in the USA ePhos® , the electrochemical process for precipitating phos- phate from effluent developed and patented by raunhofer IGB was successfully introduced to the market in 2015. We have been able to negotiate a licensing agreement with the US company OVIVO, an established supplier of water supply and distribution equipment and systems, covering markets in the USA, Canada, and Mexico. In the ePhos® process, ammonium (NH4 + ) and phosphate (PO4 3– ) are precipitated as struvite through a purely electrochemical approach using a sacrificial magnesium electrode ue to changes in operating conditions and throughput targets for operators of wastewater treatment plants – caused for ex- ample by reduced discharge limits for phosphorus – the need for technologies to eliminate or recover phosphorus from community effluent has grown mmonium and phosphate are recovered by the ePhos® process for use as high-quality fertilizer struvite. HIGHLIGHTS 2015 1