Dutch utility Waterschapsbedrijf Limburg has converted a treatment
plant into a full size laboratory to test new technologies and materials.
This includes a self-repairing concrete tank. As a world frst, how does
this work and what potential does it have to reduce operation and
By Andrew Williams
Fixing cracks in concrete water and wastewater tanks is an unavoidable - not o mention diffcult, time consuming and often very costly - activity. When coupled with the added complications associated with draining tanks before
repairs can be carried out, as well as the extra costs inevitably incurred when
treatment facilities are shut down, such tasks can soon turn into a considerable
burden on businesses and the bottom line.
In an interesting attempt to tackle these ongoing challenges, Netherlands
based water utility Waterschapsbedrijf Limburg (WBL) has now embarked on an
innovative pilot project involving the construction of the frst ever wastewater
treatment tank made partly from self-repairing concrete. So, what exactly does the
pilot project entail? What are the actual and potential applications of self-healing
concrete in the wastewater storage and treatment sector? And what impact could
the new material ultimately have on tank maintenance and repair costs?
Cracking: If cracks appear in the concrete,
calclite-precipitating bacteria automatically
produce lime to repair the damage