Our young Masters in Membrains, Emile Lammers and Jelmer de Wal, have had the opportunity to learn about Wafilin Systems’s way of working, which is based on the Full-circle approach. One of the projects they have recently worked on was the project for Focus Solutions. Emile Lammers and Jelmer de Wal talk about their role in the project and how they experienced this way of working.
Membrane solution for Focus Solutions’ new product
For one of their new products, our client Focus Solutions was looking for a membrane filtration system to treat alcoholic products with the aim of recovering and purifying alcohol (ethanol). They want to use the clear, colourless ethanol as an ingredient for the production of beverages, among other things. They contacted Wafilin Systems to develop this system. At the time of writing (March 2021), the installation is being built at the Focus Solutions factory in Oosterhout in the Netherlands. The expected launch – always a special moment – is scheduled for the beginning of April. “That is the moment you get to see the results of all your hard work,” says Jelmer de Wal.
According to director of Focus Solutions, Frank ter Horne, Focus Solutions has had a very positive experience working with Wafilin Systems. “Focussing on solutions rather than on problems – we believe that’s Wafilin Systems’ strength. And it is something these young employees are learning right from the start,” says Frank ter Horne.
Getting started with pilot studies and system designs
Emile Lammers was involved in the pilot study, which forms the basis of our unique approach. In this project, it was used to validate the design, select the most suitable membranes, and calculate the process conditions. Emile Lammers explains that this is Focus’ first membrane system. “They showed a lot of interest in my work on the pilots, which was good to see. They were closely following the progress during testing and I was able to show and explain the process to them.” Emile Lammers learnt from this experience, too: “Clients really appreciate when you show an interest in them, which is something I will take on board for future projects.”
At the same time, Jelmer de Wal was working on the system design. Using membranes for treatment is a well-known process, but the results of pilot testing allowed Wafilin Systems to accurately tailor the membrane selection and system design to Focus’ specific product. Jelmer de Wal: “We did have to keep a close eye on time management as we had two processes – conducting the pilot study and designing the system – run simultaneously.”
Full circle: a great experience!
“As a Wafilin employee, it’s great that you get to be part of all steps of the full circle; you are involved in the entire project,” says Jelmer de Wal. “One potential downside is the lack of opportunity to specialize, if you wanted to. But the advantage is that you get to perform a range of different tasks and won’t get bored easily.” Emile Lammers is enthusiastic about full circle-based working, too. There is no specific part that stands out to him; as someone who takes an interest in many things, he finds all parts of the process interesting in their own way. “I love the variety, actually. It’s quite unique to be involved in the entire process, and to have a great installation and a satisfied customer to show for it,” says Emile Lammers.
If you are interested in our full-circle approach, you can find out more in this article. Please contact our account manager Gerbrand Siegersma at firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.