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Decentralized Water Treatment

As our planet faces challenges from unpredictable weather and water shortages, decentralized water treatment offers the flexibility needed to ensure a steady supply of potable water

Today's changing climate is making water stress and water scarcity unfortunately common around the world. To guarantee supplies of fresh water, more and more water authorities and businesses are turning to water purification, and seawater and brackish water desalination. These often take place at mammoth plants that serve entire cities or even regions. But fluctuating weather patterns can render such plants obsolete before they're even paid for.

Now, technological advances have made another model practical. Fluence specializes in decentralized water treatment, also known as distributed water treatment, which places small plants near the point of use for flexibility and efficiency. This eliminates the need for expensive pipelines to tie into central water treatment plants.

Decentralized water treatment, including desalination, can be an ideal solution for a variety of residential, commercial, and industrial settings, including:

  • Small communities
  • School campuses
  • Commercial developments
  • Hotels and resorts
  • Golf courses
  • Industrial plants
  • Mining, or oil and gas camps
  • Construction sites
  • And more.

Smart Packaged Water Solutions

Fluence's NIROBOX™ Smart Packaged Water Solutions -- featuring modular freshwater and desalination plants installed in standard shipping containers -- are ideal for decentralized treatment anywhere in the world, even off the grid.

The self-contained units are plug-and-play, easy to deploy, and more cost-effective than conventional plants. They can be up and running in less than four months from receipt of the purchase order.

Larger plant capacity can be achieved by combining containers on a small scale, or on a large scale with NIROPLANT configurations, which are ideal where ease of operation, lower CAPEX, fast delivery, and a modular approach are required.

Decentralized Freshwater Treatment
NIROBOX FW is a modular, self-contained system that treats feed water from nonsaline sources such as rivers, lakes, or wells. The units can handle total dissolved solids (TDS) up to 1,000 ppm. NIROBOX FW uses advanced membrane filtration technologies to remove turbidity, microbes, and other solids, bringing water up to potable standards.

A single, compact NIROBOX FW unit can produce up to 5,000 m3/d of clean, high-quality water that can be used directly for drinking or as industrial process water.

Contact Fluence to learn more about NIROBOX freshwater treatment, or to discuss your next project with our experts.

Decentralized Seawater Desalination
NIROBOX SW is a modular, high-output, and efficient membrane-based seawater desalination solution that offers pretreatment, reverse osmosis, and post-treatment in a single, 40-foot shipping container.

NIROBOX SW is suitable for a variety of applications -- including desalination for potable or industrial water -- and can meet the most stringent regulatory requirements. Offering industry-leading capacity, a single NIROBOX SW container can produce up to 1,500 m3/d (275 GPM) of permeate water, making it the most compact plant-in-a-box.

NIROBOX SW offers recovery rates of up to 50%. This, along with low chemical and energy consumption, reduces overall operational costs.

Contact Fluence to learn more about NIROBOX seawater desalination, or to discuss your next project with our experts.

Decentralized Brackish Water Desalination
NIROBOX BW is a modular, highly efficient desalination solution for brackish water. It delivers potable water, industrial process water, and high-quality water for irrigation and other applications.

Designed for flexibility, NIROBOX BW treats water from a wide variety of sources, including surface water, groundwater, and well water, and can handle turbidity, salinity, and a wide range of contaminants, from 1,000 to 10,000 ppm total dissolved solids (TDS).

NIROBOX BW offers recovery rates of up to 90%, while boasting low chemical and energy consumption. Its patent-pending process includes a cleaning process for membranes that inhibits microorganism growth and scaling. This natural disinfecting effect lowers energy and chemical requirements and minimizes the plant's ecological footprint.

Contact Fluence to learn more about NIROBOX brackish water desalination, or to discuss your next project with our experts.

Customizable Modular Plants
Fluence’s NIROFLEX Desalination Building Blocks uses a series of standardized units for pretreatment filtration and reverse osmosis desalination. With these "building blocks" and a range of optional features, Fluence can quickly and economically build a desalination plant that fits your requirements for capacity and water quality.

Developed from the highest quality standard components, NIROFLEX includes blocks for reverse osmosis, as well as pretreatment blocks for ultrafiltration and multimedia filtration. The versatility of the Niroflex system means the blocks can be arranged for capacities that produce from 100 m³/d (25,000 GPD) up to 15,000 m³/day (3.75 MGD) of clean water.

Niroflex can be configured with a wide range of optional features, including:

  • Integrated cleaning in place (CIP) with an automatic flushing system
  • Compressor with air dryer
  • Feed pumping station
  • Alternative power supply
  • Remineralization
  • Delivery pumping station
  • Remote monitoring software with cloud-based data logging

Contact Fluence to learn more about NIROFLEX modular plants, or to discuss your next project with our experts.

Sustainable Water Solutions, Delivered Anywhere

Fluence is a global leader in decentralized freshwater and desalination treatment solutions for the municipal, industrial, and commercial markets, with references around the world.

Contact Fluence to learn more about the benefits of our decentralized and Smart Packaged water treatment solutions, or to discuss your next project with our experts.

What Is Smart Packaged Water Treatment?

Fluence has a range of Smart Packaged water treatment solutions that bring treatment exactly where it's needed, with plants packaged in standard shipping containers. They're designed with efficiency, flexibility, and portability in mind. Bringing small, decentralized water treatment plants to the point of use eliminates the need for expensive piping networks. They're an ideal solution for hotels and resorts, worker camps, small communities, and more -- even off the grid.


Benefits of Decentralized Water Treatment

In its quest to bring safe, clean water wherever it's needed around the world, Fluence has put a focus on Smart Packaged solutions, small independent treatment plants housed in standard shipping containers. They can be used alone or in tandem to customize capacity, and they're ideal for a decentralized system that brings treatment to the point of need.

Economy and Efficiency

Smart Packaged NIROBOX™ plants are housed in standard shipping containers and are ready to go. They're engineered for fast deployment, as well as simple operation and maintenance. They also integrate the most energy-efficient components available. With NIROFLEX modular systems, pre-engineered building blocks allow the fast commissioning of custom-tailored solutions.

Flexibility and Scalability

Due to smart pre-engineering and design, NIROBOX is ready for integration with other systems and equipment. It is completely modular, allowing for capacity upgrades if required. Multiple pre-engineered configurations are available, enabling fast delivery, integration, commissioning, and operation.


Low energy consumption and chemical use reduce the environmental impact of Fluence Smart Packaged plants. For instance, NIROBOX's unique design provides a configuration of low-energy membranes, a positive displacement high-pressure pump, a work exchanger energy-recovery device, and a variable frequency device (VFD). NIROBOX has the smallest carbon footprint of any desalination plant in its class.

Compactness and Portability

The compact footprint of Fluence decentralized solutions minimizes site impact, lowers the cost of site development, and ensures easy expansion with minimal disruption to neighbors or the environment. The modular containers can be easily moved for redeployment or resale should your water treatment needs change

Operational Intelligence

NIROBOX's operating systems are fully automated, and remotely monitored and operated, which allows for optimization of flow rates, chemical consumption, energy consumption, and more. Our smart design keeps ongoing equipment, operation, and maintenance expenses in check. Data and reports are easily accessible from anywhere on any platform. Real-time alerts can be sent for system malfunctions or abnormal performance.

Featured Decentralized Water Treatment Case Studies

NIROBOX™ Seawater Desalination for Coastal Resort

Due to an ongoing drought, a beach resort, golf course, and spa in Costa Rica was facing water scarcity. It needed a solution with a high recovery rate that featured low energy consumption and minimal use of chemicals. The system had to be quiet, have a small physical footprint, and a low ecological impact. Three NIROBOX units were installed, with a total treatment capacity of approximately 1,500 m³/d, providing disc filtration, ultrafiltration, SWRO, and remineralization to drinking-water quality. The system was started up only eight months after it was ordered, with a plan to gradually increase reliance on the system with the approach of tourist season.

Solar Power Plant Recycles Blowdown Water to Save Fresh Water

A solar power plant in Israel uses sunlight to produce high-pressure steam to power a turbine generator. Brackish blowdown wastewater, which is continuously discharged on-site, must be disposed of in evaporation ponds unless it's treated for reuse. Fluence housed the entire water treatment process in a Smart Packaged NIROBOX system, which reduced use of fresh water by 50%. The system uses ultrafiltration and reverse osmosis to produce cooling makeup water from the blowdown, and adds second-pass reverse osmosis, GTM degassing, and CEDI polishing to produce ultrapure water for boiler use.

NIROFLEX Desalination Building Blocks for Engineering Company

When an engineering company needed drinking water on Taiwan's Nangan and Dongyin islands, Fluence created a treatment train that included two 2,000 m³/d ultrafiltration units and two 600 m³/d reverse osmosis units, as well as energy-recovery devices. The manufacturing time was three months.

Seawater Desalination for Power Plant Expansion in Egypt

When an Egyptian power plant planned to expand its generation capacity, it needed a source of ultrapure water, and it needed it quickly. In order to use low-quality feed water from the Red Sea, Fluence designed a three-train demineralization system featuring ultrafiltration and reverse osmosis. The first train was delivered in four months, with the second and third following two months later.

Episkopi Desalination Plant in Cyprus

In Cyprus, the government is relying on desalination to meet the nation’s growing water needs due to population spikes and ever-increasing tourism. Acting as a subcontractor, we manufactured, installed, and commissioned the main process equipment for a 50,000 m3/d desalination plant in Episkopi. The treatment process includes pretreatment by ultrafiltration membranes, seawater reverse osmosis (SWRO), energy recovery, and remineralization for potability.

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