Arid region of Spain irrigated with UV-treated effluent

In a first of its kind in Europe, UV technology from Aquionics' British sister company, Hanovia Ltd., now treats municipal effluent for irrigating crops in Spain's arid Murcia region. The area's microclimate allows fruit and vegetables to be grown year round, giving it the popular name 'the vegetable garden of Europe.' But due to unusual geography, there's very low rainfall, meaning irrigation water is scarce. As such, effluent now is being used for watering crops...

ERLANGER, KY, Aug. 22, 2006 -- In one of the first schemes of its kind in Europe, UV technology from Aquionics' British sister company, Hanovia Ltd., is being used to treat municipal effluent for irrigating crops in the arid Murcia region of Spain.

Murcia has a unique microclimate which allows fruit and vegetables to be grown all year round, giving the area its popular name 'the vegetable garden of Europe'. Because of its unusual geography, however, the region has very low rainfall, meaning that irrigation water is extremely scarce. For this reason effluent is now being used for watering crops.

"The effluent supply is gravity-fed, so the disinfection system is very susceptible to pressure loss," explained the company's Spanish representative. "Medium pressure UV technology was therefore a deciding factor in the choice of treatment system, as the low number of UV lamps in each chamber offers less resistance to fluid flow, resulting in lower overall head loss. Medium pressure technology also results in energy and component savings for the system operators and is more reliable at permanently destroying microorganisms," he added.

The installation consists of three medium pressure UV treatment chambers installed in series. They treat a combined effluent volume of over 130,000 gallons/hour (500m3/hour) and are normally running 16 hours per day, although they can operate 24 hours a day if required.

Commenting on the project, Aquionics President Jon McClean, who heads Halma's UV division, said, "The Murcia project once again demonstrates the Halma UV companies' ability to provide custom-designed solutions for specific disinfection problems."

As an innovator in ultraviolet water treatment and disinfection, Aquionics ( and the Halma Group divisions have been providing the preeminent UV technologies since 1924. Aquionics is based in Erlanger, KY.

Based in Amersham, Buckinghamshire, England, Halma PLC ( businesses range from smoke detectors to ophthalmic lenses, but protection and detection are the common ties at its nearly 50 subsidiaries. Its UV businesses include Aquionics Inc. in the United States, Berson UV-techniek in The Netherlands, and Hanovia Ltd. in Great Britain. Halma operates businesses worldwide, but Europe accounts for over half of sales.


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