Research & Innovation

How do you calculate which combination of climate-adaptive measures has the most impact on water management? And how can our infrastructure mean even more to society? Aquafin has extensive knowledge of sewer systems and water purification. We also look at broader societal challenges with an open mind.

In our R&D department, knowledge building is central. We want to develop new applications and services, gain insight into broad sociatal challenges and provide an answer to them.

Research strategy focused on sustainability


Zero-waste water cycle

"Zero-waste" means avoiding or heavily reducing waste production so that future generations do not have to pay the price. For the urban water cycle, this means reusing waste flows as far as possible.
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Robust and healthy water systems

The quality and quantity of water are barometers for robust and healthy water systems. There are many factors that influence this. We research how we can add value from our field of expertise.
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Internet Of Water

Digital Water Value Chain

Digital solutions are essential for applying zero-waste principles and making the most of opportunities for value creation. A robust and healthy water system keeps the right quantity and quality of water in the right place at all times. Aquafin is investigating the possibilities of a multi-agent system that not only optimises the process but also has a positive impact on the use of energy and materials.
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Eco-efficient business models

Our goal is to minimise the ecological footprint of our treatment process. Through monitoring and LCA programmes (life cycle analysis), we track emissions of CO2, N2O and CH4, for example. This enables us to detect precisely what are the hotspots for these emissions and do something about this.
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A strong alliance with research partners

Team of experts

Aquafin's R&D department consists of about 25 research engineers working on projects within Aquafin's area of expertise. For this purpose, they often collaborate with national and international partners, with the close involvement of the client.

water europe

Research facilities

At the site of the wastewater treatment plant in Aartselaar, close to the company's headquarters, Aquafin built a research hall equipped for pilot-testing new techniques and technologies. Four technical experts are responsible for the building and the operational control of the pilot set-ups in this research hall.

In addition, full scale tests can be carried out on Aquafin's wastewater treatment plants. The diversity of treatment types and capacity is an additional strength in this respect.

Aquafin's wastewater treatment plants all have their own laboratory facilities, where technical personnel perform the basic analyses. Specific analyses and analyses as part of research are carried out by specialized laboratory technicians in our central laboratory in Aalst. 


Profile picture Birgit De Bock

Birgit De Bock

manager R&D