Focal areas
Water management
Adaptation to climate change
Linked project
Komponente der Filtereinheit © Ronja Voß

RAIN: Set-up of the gravity-driven filtration-irrigation system in Accra

After finding a suitable test site in late April and procuring all the necessary materials for the construction of the pilot plant, a team from the Ruhr-University of Bochum (RUB) and the University of Ghana (UG) began constructing the gravity filter irrigation plant in early May.

Zusammenstellung der Komponenten. © Ronja Voß

Assembling of components. © Ronja Voß

In the last few days, the team of the RUB prepared the grounds for the pilot plant, drilled holes for the tank feedthroughs, connected the different units of the filter system and prepared filter bed media for the two filter stages. Gravel of assorted sizes was used as a support layer, followed by biochar as the main filter media. Biochar is a natural product that can be obtained from locally available organic residues such as maize spindles, coconut shells or rice husks. The biochar tested in this pilot plant was produced from maize spindles using a TLDU-gasifier. Out of the three different biochar types tested in column experiments in the laboratory, biochar from maize spindles has shown the best removal efficiency.

Vorbereitung der Filtereinheiten. © Sophie Krüger

Preparing the filter units. © Sophie Krüger

After some long days under the Ghanaian sun the team of the RUB and the UG finished setting up the low-tech filter system. In the coming weeks, the pilot system will be operated and tested for the elimination performance of selected parameters such as the indicator organism Escherichia coli.

Das Schwerkraftfilter-Bewässerungssystem © ??

The gravity filter irrigation plant © RAIN


Sophie Krüger, M.Sc.
+49 (0) 234 32 - 27056 /

Prof. Dr.-Ing. habil. Marc Wichern
+49 (0) 234 32 – 275891 /

Dr.-Ing. Manfred Lübken
+49 (0) 234 32 – 23114 /