Meet our expert

Without expertise, digital solutions don’t solve anything

When it comes to smart digital solutions, Jesper Berner, Manager of Advanced Water Treatment at Kemira, compliments switched-on plant operators who expect suppliers to propose new solutions to boost cost effectiveness and efficiency.

Without expertise, digital solutions don’t solve anything

These days digital is everywhere. The wastewater treatment industry reflects this trend. As plant operators become more technologically aware, they expect the same level of convenience and visibility from the tools and solutions they use to manage their processes.

If you ask me why the demand for smart process management solutions is increasing, the short answer is “because we can do it”. The technology is already available; the key is to make sure you have the right tools and expertise in place to get the most from it. The real edge comes from the combination of chemistry expertise, algorithms, and smart process know-how that Kemira can offer.

The technology for smart process management is already available; the key is to make sure you have the right tools and expertise in place to get the most from it.

A smart solution for every challenge

With Kemira KemConnect™, our wastewater treatment customers benefit not only from smart technologies but also from the knowledge and chemistry expertise of our vast network of application specialists. We can help customers with everything from optimizing phosphorus removal with KemConnect P-optimizer, to cutting costs and improving the efficiency of sludge dewatering with KemConnect SD.

To take an example from Denmark, we have fines on the amount of phosphorus that’s contained in the effluent from wastewater treatment plants, so that’s a direct cost to the customer. By helping them optimize their phosphorus removal we’re helping them cut the cost of the treatment process.

It’s an exciting time for Kemira because even if our smart process management offering is not yet widely known outside a select group of customers, we know that everyone can benefit from it. Once we have the chance to discuss with customers and prove the benefits with hard data and facts, it doesn’t take long to convince them. And right now we’re building dedicated teams in EMEA and North America to do just that.

Once we have the chance to discuss with customers and prove the benefits with hard data and facts, it doesn’t take long to convince them.

Making firefighting a thing of the past

Typically the starting point is that a customer comes to us with a problem they’re trying to solve – for example, they might have an issue with struvite build-up, or they might be looking for a smart way to improve the Total Cost of Ownership of their sludge dewatering process. We can analyze their process and gather hard data via KemConnect, and then recommend a solution. As well as solving the issue at hand, we can often also highlight other ways we can improve the process, for example by optimizing the chemical dosage and dosing points, which often means less chemicals are needed.

We also save customers’ time by freeing up man-hours at the treatment plant. When they can track KPIs and keep an eye on everything that’s going on, they have more time to focus on being proactive and continuously improving the process rather than just firefighting when problems arise. And because we see everything that the customer sees, we can be proactive, too, by helping them to identify potential issues before they become bigger problems.

Because we see everything that the customer sees, we can be proactive, too, by helping them to identify potential issues before they become bigger problems.

Preparation, preparation, preparation

Once a customer knows what smart process management can do for them, it’s our job to deliver on those promises and help them hit their KPIs. But even though we’re talking about new digital solutions, it’s simply not the case that we rush in and install a bunch of equipment and expect that to solve everything on its own. I’m very much a believer that preparation is the mother of success. Before things get started there’s some pre-work to do – testing, data analysis, site audits – and this is where we can really say we have the edge with our deep process and chemistry knowledge. Without this expertise, these digital solutions would be worthless.

Name
Jesper Berner
Title
Manager, Advanced Water Treatment, Industry & Water
At Kemira since
1994
Location
Middelfart, Denmark
Topics to watch
Waste recycling, and especially new ways to tackle the problem of the huge amount of waste, including microplastics, that ends up in our oceans and environment.
Words to live by
Preparation is the mother of success.
Ways to unwind
Sailing, cycling, and of course good food and quality time with the family.

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