Recently, the technical magazine aguasresiduales.info interviewed Joaquín Murría, business operations manager of BIOBOX®.
BIOBOX® is the result of an intense effort in R+D+i of Inngen.io and with the knowledge and experience of the company INGEOBRAS.
In other words, BIOBOX brings together the engineering knowledge of INGEOBRAS and the proprietary technologies developed at INNGEN.IO to commercialize compact plants for the treatment of drinking water, wastewater or water reuse as a “packaged product”, machine type, Plug&Play.
BIOBOX® plants come from the idea of making available to all types of companies very advanced technology, typical of large plants, and transforming traditional water treatment plants into intelligent, modular systems, with self-management capacity and with a minimum need for intervention by operating employees.
The solutions offered are tailor-made plants, designed with a Plug&Play concept, 100% automated, designed for the treatment of small and medium flows. Currently, the company has 9 types of specific solutions for each pollutant. However, these 9 solutions can be combined to operate to remove more than one pollutant, or to increase the treatment capacity, covering almost the entire spectrum of water pollutants.
Joaquín Murría, business operations manager of BIOBOX® tells us in this interview about the advantages and benefits of this equipments for water treatment.
Joaquín, what would you say in general lines are the main advantages and benefits of BIOBOX® technology?
BIOBOX plants offer great added value to the consumer, as they use innovative proprietary technology and propose a disruptive approach compared to other traditional technologies.
They are custom-designed plants, pre-assembled and completely finished for start-up. All solutions are designed based on technical applicability, profitability and sustainability of the plant as key factors.
This equipment is very user-friendly, as it is fully automated and uses 4.0 technology. It constantly monitors key parameters, allowing real-time and historical visualization from any device with an internet connection.
This is very important as it facilitates self-management with minimal intervention of operational personal, avoids potential problems and achieves continuous improvement.
BIOBOX provides the client with a multidisciplinary team, expert in water treatment, that will accompany him in each phase of the project, and that has the know-how of the development of the technology, understanding from the beginning how it works.
There are other providers of traditional solutions. What would you say sets you apart from the competition?
In BIOBOX, we are a very peculiar company since we have INGEOBRAS, our own engineering with more than 15 years of experience and Inngen.io, the advanced engineering laboratory of INGEOBRAS, where technologies are developed and tested, R&D projects are carried out and the development of BIOBOX processes is advanced.
Having these business units, which feed back on each other, allows us to be one of the few companies capable of manufacturing our own equipment and integrating our own advanced innovative technologies, with clear advantages over traditional technology.
That is, unlike other suppliers that offer traditional solutions or simply assemble equipment from existing traditional technologies, at BIOBOX we support the customer in each phase of the 360º project, analyze their situation and provide an optimal solution to their problem with existing technology, our own or a combination.
If the problem to be faced is very complex, we are able to investigate it in our R&D center and create a tailor-made technology for that specific case.
In addition, years of experience have allowed us to reach strategic agreements with partners in different parts of the world and to accumulate success stories, recognitions and certifications of the technologies developed.
Currently, BIOBOX is generating great interest and is expected to grow exponentially in the coming years.
These containerized solutions allow us to treat various types of water, both potable and urban and industrial wastewater, can you give us more details?
That’s right, we currently have 9 types of modular plants, pre-designed and focused on potable water and urban or industrial wastewater applications. These plants can be customized to remove the following contaminants: nitrates, iron and manganese, arsenic, ammonium, organic matter, heavy metals, phosphorus and turbidity.
There is also the possibility to combine several BIOBOX technologies. We offer solutions of two technologies incorporated in a single container or designs of more BIOBOX systems operating in parallel or in series, for the removal of two or more contaminants or to increase the treatment capacity.
Finally, we go one step further and propose to generate value through the treatment and reuse of treated water. We are able to design wastewater treatment plants, capable of creating almost closed circuits, to reintroduce treated water into industrial processes. This reduces the amount of water required, increases business profitability and protects the environment.
Joaquín, the technology is combinable and scalable for different flow rates and concentrations, can it also work in a complementary way with pre-existing infrastructures?
Yes, in general we offer modular plants of fast construction, delivered in container or skid format. These are solutions that can be adapted to the needs of each customer without the need for civil works. In addition, as you say, they are combinable and scalable.
That is to say, we can install a BIOBOX container but in a few months the customer may consider increasing the treatment flow. It would then be enough to install another BIOBOX solution operating in parallel or in series with the already installed solution.
However, we are very flexible and, thanks to our engineering department, we can design customized solutions that adapt to existing infrastructures or carry out projects for the construction of new infrastructures.
We always adapt to the requirements of each client, trying to build the solution in the smallest possible space, in order to save on investment and maintenance costs.
These are plug&play plants that are 100% automated and can be controlled remotely, how long after the order is placed will they be available?
The compact BIOBOX plants are quick construction solutions. However, as they are tailor-made plants, the construction time depends on the requirements of the plant.
To give a real example, the biological nitrogen and phosphorus removal project (Zamora-Chinchipe Mining Region, Ecuador) met some milestones in terms of planning and execution. It took less than 5 weeks from project definition to delivery.
BIOBOX® is a technology that, during water treatment, does not generate concentrated rejects that are difficult to manage, how do you achieve this?
Each BIOBOX employs different technologies, depending on the target contaminants, including adsorption, filtration, oxidation and biological processes based on fixed bed bioreactors.
We are a company highly specialized in biological treatments and we have been working on bioremediation-based technologies since 2016. That is why we know perfectly the know-how of the technologies and we have a wide experience in this field.
In addition, we have a patent on the Puremust-SN® technology. A technology certified by SGS that is based on the elimination of nitrates contained in the water, by using a heterotrophic biological process, transforming nitrates into nitrogen gas.
A peculiarity of working with biological technologies is that they do not generate concentrated rejects that are difficult to manage. After all, we use bacteria that feed on the pollutant and transform it into harmless gas.
Unlike traditional technologies such as reverse osmosis, we remove the contaminant, not separate it. In addition, we do not have water losses since we get the same amount of clean water.
It is a natural and sustainable treatment. It is the same process that occurs in nature, intensified, optimized and automated.
Finally Joaquín, what expectations do you have from BIOBOX® both in the short and medium term regarding the implementation of your technology?
As I mentioned earlier, we are delighted with the growth of BIOBOX since its launch. We launched it only a year and a half ago, but it is amazing how we have been growing and achieving notoriety in the sector.
Today, we already have strategic agreements with companies in the sector and two official distributors of BIOBOX technology in Chile and New Zealand. We are in talks with companies in the United States, Spain, Paraguay and the United Kingdom to continue expanding our network.
Having the support of local companies is very important because it allows customers to have a local reference and give us support in installation tasks, maintenance or additional requirements of the plants.
For all these reasons, BIOBOX is expected to grow exponentially in the coming years.