City-zen Days: Cooling with Drinking Water

Using water for heating and cooling is hardly a novel idea. Implementing it on a large scale, however, is a totally different ball game. One of City-zen’s demonstrations was finding out what would be needed to make this possible. During City-zen Days, a presentation by the Dutch blood bank Sanquin and water company Waternet revealed different perspectives and joint insights gained.

Download the presentations here.


Barriers & Bridges

First, Otto Reinstra of Waternet took us through the why, how and when of cooling with drinking water. The power of the concept in its most basic form quickly became clear. However, so did the possible impediments. “At the moment,” Otto said, “cooling from drinking water poses some considerable long-term risks.” Hardly surprising, then, that the concept has as yet to be rolled out on a large scale. Fortunately, the clear and obtainable factors for success far outnumbered the impediments. Moreover, most of the success factors seemed to rely on changes in approach and attitude rather than insoluble technical issues.

© brenda de vries 2019

In Cold Blood

Sanquin, with core activities of producing and supplying blood and plasma products, teamed up with Waternet to discover what the advantages and disadvantages would be when applying the concept to a pharmaceutical factory. Roy van der Mark, in-house consultant at Sanquin, unveiled the already implemented changes and a greater Masterplan for cooling in 2030.

Going through the results and tables, Roy pointed out that successful implementation of the concept actually leads to improved “uptime” of the cooling process. This greatly reduces the operational risk – and as “long-term risk” is one of the largest barriers identified earlier by Otto Reinstra, this improved uptime might just be a deciding factor for parties to embrace this concept. Other factors mitigated the success of the pilot, unfortunately; unforeseen practical issues such as building an additional platform to ensure accessibility for maintenance and production increase that failed to materialize proved that this really is uncharted territory.

© brenda de vries 2019

The Future Shape of Water

With the technical and governance lessons learnt in our hands, Sanquin can carefully take the next step towards the Masterplan 2030. Waternet, in their transformation from water company to energy supplier, can add knowledge gained from other pilots (e.g. cooling with river water). Although there is a strong dependency on parties willing to invest in this long-term endeavor, it seems that there is a bright future of cooling with water ahead of us.

Download the presentations here.

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