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Valerie Naidoo 
Biomimicry, a tool for innovative water treatment solutions

Golder Associates Africa, BiomimicrySA and Water Research Commission (WRC) will be hosting a workshop during the WISA Biennial Conference in Nelspruit. According to the programme the workshop will take place on Wednesday, 28 May at Cheetah Room as from 13:40.

Golder Associates Africa, together with BiomimicrySA and Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT) are busy with a WRC project demonstrating the Biomimicry methodology in the design, construction and maintenance and operation of constructed wetlands.

Biomimicry is a new science that studies “natures models” and then emulates these forms, processes, systems and strategies to solve human problems. This design discipline seeks sustainable solutions by emulating time tested patterns, designs and strategies of natural systems.

One of the products developed as part of the project is a tool called “Natures Aqua purifiers”. This tool was developed to facilitate Biomimicry innovation in the water sector by providing a collection of examples from nature where water purification processes take place.

 The aims of the workshop are:

·         to introduce attendees to the Biomimicry methodology,

·         share experience gained in the project thus far,

·         present case studies in which Biomimicry was used in water treatment design,

·         share the aqua purifiers tool,

·         demonstrate the use of the tool,

·         document feedback received on the tool to improve on the final product that will be made available at the end of the project.

The target audience for this workshop will be innovators, research leaders from industry and academia and water treatment plant suppliers.

The WRC has identified a need for innovation in the water sector. Several techniques for innovation are available. Dr Valerie Naidoo of the WRC will present the WRC perspective on water innovations.

Claire Janisch, a certified Biomimicry professional and founder of BiomimicrySA, will present an introduction to Biomimicry and a summary of the project to date. This will be an interactive session enabling the audience to become familiar with the methodology. This will be followed by case studies. Water treatment technologies inspired by nature will be presented. This will include a section on ecomachines and restorers which are biological treatment systems inspired by natural wetland systems.

Priyal Dama-Fakir of Golder Associates together with Claire Janisch will facilitate a working session where-by examples from the tool will be presented and the practical steps required to transform these examples into commercially available designs will be discussed.

Attendees of the workshop will receive copies of the tool as part of the workshop package. It is hoped that the examples will be transformed into practical, sustainable solutions to water treatment.

For more details on the workshop contact: Dr Valerie Naidoo, Research Manager at WRC on valerien@wrc.org ; tel: 012 330 0340.  


Dr Valerie Naidoo ,  Research Manager at WRC
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