Spotlight on bio-engineering sediment management

At Deltares in the Netherlands, a research team is developing a portfolio of technologies dedicated to the management of the finest and most challenging fraction of soft sediments.

These technologies may unambiguously be called nature based because they make use of natural processes to enhance dewatering and strengthening, induce flocculation and the settling of fines, and protect the muddy bed from erosion.

Some of these technologies are already at an advanced stage of research and development, the reason that they can already report about them.

For the present, the team refer to the portfolio of innovations as the Bio-Engineering and Sediment Management And Removal of Turbidity Technologies (BESMART Technologies) portfolio, though this has led to confusion.

This research at Deltares explicitly does not involve techniques associated with classical biotechnology, such as gene manipulation or genetic engineering. The approach may be seen as holistic, and it does not interfere with nature but attempts to bring about a synergy with it.

This article is of interest to anyone involved in the dredging industry and will allow readers to gain insight into these technologies that make use of natural processes to enhance dewatering and strengthening, induce flocculation and the settling of fines, and protect muddy beds from erosion.

IADC photo

Authors: Dr Miguel Angel de Lucas (Deltares) | Dr Alex Kirichek (Deltares) | Dr Martine Kox, PhD (Deltares) | Floris van Rees (Deltares)

The article is published in the winter issue of IADC’s scientific journal Terra et Aqua.

Articles in Terra et Aqua investigate and explain the latest innovations relevant in the dredging industry and its related sectors.

Photo: IADC