The Berlin Centre of Competence for Water (Kompetenzzentrum Wasser Berlin – KWB) is an international centre for water research and knowledge transfer. The main objective of KWB is to develop expertise in the overall management of water resources and in the field of water technology. To this end, the institute combines the capacities of the Berlin universities, research institutes, public institutions and regional SMEs. Thanks to this combined approach, KWB plays a prominent role internationally in water-related research and innovation.
The centre is committed to realising research programmes, fund raising, international workshops and conferences for the promotion of science. The Research and Development plan of the Berlin Centre of Competence for Water includes several research projects, whose overall mission is to support a more sustainable use of natural resources.
There are three specialised departments that also function as the Centre’s main research areas with focus on groundwater protection, sewerage system management, and wastewater treatment technologies.
Groundwater management – In large parts of the world, groundwater is the most important source of drinking water. KWB works on questions relating to resource conservation in the management of groundwater for drinking water production. The research in this field focuses on groundwater regeneration and efficient well management.
Sewers and surface water protection – Pollutants from sewage systems and agriculture harm the quality of surface waters. KWB carries out research on the monitoring, presentation, simulation, prediction and regulation of the inflows and their impacts on surface waters. Techniques and strategies are developed to reduce or avoid such inflows.
Waste water treatment technology – Specifications for the future quality of surface waters can only be achieved by the constant improvement of wastewater treatment technology. KWB is working on innovative methods for wastewater treatment, and also power generation and resource recycling from urban wastewater. Efficiency and environmental quality are key parameters. The project CARISMO ("CARbon IS MOney) was amongst the Top 3 of the German Sustainability Award in the category Research. Thanks to an innovative filtration process, researchers developed a new concept for wastewater treatment with the goal of tapping the full energy potential of the organic matter contained in domestic wastewater.