Energy efficient and sustainable water-supply technologies for Africa (WASTEC)

A joint project between Fraunhofer and Stellenbosch University (SU)

”DiaDis” diamond electrode demonstrator for on-site production of ozonated water.
© Fraunhofer IST
DiaDis diamond-electrode demonstrator for on-site production of ozonated water.
Das 7. Ziel für nachhaltige Entwicklung der UN: Bezahlbare und saubere Energie


The ICON project WASTEC aims to merge the expertise and associated technologies available at Fraunhofer and Stellenbosch University with its Water Institute in the field of water treatment and utilization and, through joint research and development, to develop solutions for the water-supply problems existing in South Africa and the sub-Saharan countries.


The technical solutions concentrate primarily on a reduction of the energy required for desalination with reverse osmosis (RO) plants and the application of new antimicrobial technologies for the safe production of foodstuffs. The Fraunhofer IST is hereby focusing on the prevention of biofilms on RO membranes through the utilization of a disinfection process developed at the Fraunhofer IST involving chemical oxidation using diamond electrodes (DiaDis technology) in combination with thin protective coatings which are applied to the membranes by means of atomic layer deposition.

Added value 

Building on WASTEC and the Fraunhofer-SU cooperation as well as the results achieved in this project, in the long term, the R&D market in other sub-Saharan countries will be opened up through the establishment of a science and technology network involving other R&D institutions and relevant industry.

Insights into the project

President Prof. Reimund Neugebauer (left), Prof. Eugene Cloete (right).
© University Stellenbosch
In January 2019, President of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft Prof. Reimund Neugebauer (in the foreground on the left) signs the contract to establish the first Fraunhofer Innovation Platform in Africa together with Prof. Eugene Cloete, Vice Rector of the University of Stellenbosch (in the foreground on the right).
Mobile ozone generator on the basis of diamond electrodes.
© Fraunhofer IST
Mobile ozone generator on the basis of diamond electrodes.

Further information


Website of the WASTEC project

Website of the WASTEC project

Funding reference

Fraunhofer ICON Program – International Cooperation and Networking.

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