June 5th, 2024

Fingerprint 2 Footprint: towards a more sustainable Industry and better water quality

In August 2023, the ‘Fingerprint 2 Footprint’ project was launched, led by the Institute for Sustainable Process Technology (ISPT) and funded by TKI Energy and Industry. This project, which runs until 2027, aims to reduce the environmental impact of Dutch industry by using advanced measurement and analysis techniques.

Dutch industry is under constant pressure to reduce their energy consumption, become circular and reduce emissions. Within this framework, circularity, predictive maintenance, emission monitoring and process control play a crucial role. In the ‘Fingerprint 2 Footprint’ project, chemical fingerprint measurements (spectroscopy and spectrometry) are used to obtain useful information that contributes to reducing the environmental footprint, while maintaining or even improving process economics and consistency.

The project follows a two-pronged approach. Knowledge institutes develop generic digital and analytical strategies, which are then validated and demonstrated through specific case studies. Radboud University focuses on developing digital and analytical technologies, while Wageningen University & Research (WUR) focuses on supporting process operators in using fingerprint technologies.

The ‘Fingerprint 2 Footprint’ project focuses on four goals:
1. Choosing the best measurement method for a given situation.
2. Creating simple measurement protocols for operators.
3. Incorporating measurement data into existing systems.
4. Improving process consistency and sustainability through quick and accurate actions based on measurement data.

This project is of great value for monitoring water quality in the Rhine. Together with Waterschap Rijn en IJssel (WRIJ) and Rijkswaterstaat, a network model is being developed for Rhine sites. This model helps detect differences between years, group substances with similar behaviour and identify pollution sources.

Through the innovative approach of the ‘Fingerprint 2 Footprint’ project, we can not only achieve a more sustainable and efficient industry, but also contribute to improving water quality in the Rhine, which is essential for both the environment and human health.

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