Boson Whitewater} Changing the way industries, IT parks, malls and apartment communities recycle wastewater


This Bengaluru-based startup converts water from sewage treatment plants (STPs) into high-quality drinking water that can be used for household purposes, central air conditioning in commercial buildings and even for drinking.

Every day, Bengaluru produces around 1400 million liters of wastewater, a good portion of which ends up in drains and lakes. According to an internal study by Bengaluru Boson Whitewater, apartment buildings use only 20% of treated wastewater from STPs and the remaining 80% goes into the sewerage system.


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This is a common problem in cities in India. For a country that has been facing severe water shortages year after year, waste water has a great potential to solve the water shortage in our cities.

Bossen Whitewater, a water services company, was founded with the aim of transforming the way industries, IT parks, shopping malls and apartment communities recycle their waste water. The system features an 11-step filtration process and is equipped with IoT to monitor water quality and quantity in real-time, as well as allow remote access with minimal manual intervention.

Tech Panda Vikas Brahmavar, Founder Bosson spoke to Whitewater about the inspiration behind the startup’s noble cause.

Vikas Brahmavar

We are the first company in India to bring decentralized wastewater treatment to the circular economy

“Water management in our cities in India depends on the amount of water that comes to the city during rainfall. We measure the water level in our dams and then plan our water distribution. But with erratic rainfall, it becomes difficult to depend entirely on rainwater for our water needs,” he explains.

“Boson Whitewater was born out of a desire to create sustainable water infrastructure for our nation’s cities,” he says.

What do they do?

The input to Boson’s whitewater system is STP-treated water, which meets plant recycling and flushing requirements. The input STP treated water is treated in the following steps.

  1. Four pretreatment steps that remove odor, color, suspended solids, and turbidity. All levels have pressure and inlet water quality control devices.
  2. A special coating-based treatment (two stages) recovers every drop of water through a reverse recycling tracking system.
  3. Post-treatment (three stages) is designed solely for the customer’s water quality needs. For example, shopping malls may need water for cooling tower recycling, or industries may use it for laundry or any other water quality requirement.
  4. The system has a UV and ozone dosing system in the post-treatment stages.

“At the end of all stages, the water is free of any contaminants. E. coli, coliforms, heavy metals, high hardness, pesticides, herbicides are all removed, and the water is clear and potable. Laboratory reports certified by NABL confirm that the water is potable.” They signify,” says the Brahmavar.

Use cases

The startup currently has the following use cases.

Apartment communities

Residential apartments generate 30,000-3,00,000 liters of waste water every day. According to the KSPCB (Karnataka State Pollution Control Board), every apartment in Bengaluru is mandated to follow a ‘zero discharge’ policy, which implies that untreated water cannot be discharged into water bodies.

However, most apartments cannot comply with this policy, as they have no means of discharging excess filtered water.

To address this problem, the Boson Whitewater system converts unused STP water into high-quality potable water, which is then transported to nearby industries via Boson Whitewater’s tanker network.

This approach ensures apartments are legally compliant and allows them to earn monthly rent on Boson’s whitewater installation, while also allowing them to intelligently manage excess treated wastewater without harming the environment.

IT parks, shopping malls and other commercial establishments

Although most commercial buildings treat their wastewater in-house, they rely on water tankers for their water needs for air conditioning and cooling towers due to the operational efficiency of wastewater plants.

Bossen Whitewater System enables shopping malls and IT parks to convert their STP water into pure potable high quality water which can be used for cooling towers, air conditioning and other purposes. It offers an OPEX model, businesses can pay for the water they use without capital investment in the equipment.

The startup operates on a unique model where commercial enterprises do not need to invest. Instead, you simply pay for the water you use, and the startup takes care of all the maintenance and operation of the equipment.

Industries

With the pipeline network, industries can now easily purchase high quality potable water for their needs. Furthermore, by installing the system, they can convert their existing STP water into pure water and become self-sufficient with less dependence on water tankers.

Origin and inspiration.

Brahmavar, who originated the idea for Boson Whitewater, was living in London before returning to India in 2008.

“When I was working in London, I walked to Tower Bridge almost every day for lunch. I was surprised to notice that there was no smell from the River Thames. It was in stark contrast to some of our lakes in Bengaluru,” he recalls.

Vikas Brahmavar & Gowthaman Desingh

“I always had this desire in the back of my mind to go back home and do something around water infrastructure,” he added.

Brahmavar decided to return to Bengaluru and work to create sustainable wastewater infrastructure for Indian cities. In the early years, it focused on non-chemical water treatment. In the year In 2014, he decided to take a step forward and make a big impact by focusing on water restoration.

“We understand that there are many people working on STPs. But the purpose of setting up an STP was to meet government regulations and not to conserve water,” he recalls.

A study of 200 apartments found that only 20% of STP bottled water is actually reused for gardening. The remaining 80% is sent to the sewer, because there is no way to use the excess water.

We realized that a large amount of water is completely wasted and this is the main cause of pollution of our lakes, overexploitation of shelters and water scarcity. Developed cities in other parts of the world base their water management plans on urban runoff because it is more predictable. They are not dependent on rainfall to manage their water needs,” he explains.

In Indian cities we completely depend on rainwater for our water needs. We want to change this infrastructure and focus on recovering drinking water from wastewater. This is the only way our cities can become more sustainable in handling the ever-increasing demand for water.

“In Indian cities, we are completely dependent on rainwater for our water needs. We want to change this infrastructure and focus on recovering drinking water from wastewater. “This is the only way our cities can handle the ever-increasing demand for water and become more sustainable,” he added.

The startup created a viable technology-backed business model to make a big impact on our cities’ water infrastructure.

“We are the first company in India to make decentralized wastewater treatment viable in a circular economy,” he said proudly.

“I started Bossen Whitewater with my co-founder Gautaman Desing, who is passionate about saving water. We both quit our comfortable jobs and started Boson Whitewater to bring about water recovery by introducing IoT-based data analysis and predictive maintenance,” he said.

The system is remotely controlled through Gautamaan’s efforts and innovations. Remote monitoring and IoT allow real-time data on water quality and quantity to be viewed from the office and employees can be hired on-demand instead of on-site.

First tests

One of the first challenges for the startup was to convince apartments to use recycled water for domestic use.

“When we use the term ‘recycled water’, most people don’t think about reuse. You always think that recycled water is for secondary use. This is the perception we aim to change. We have turned recycled water into ‘white water’. We are happy to know that many civic institutions are now using the term ‘white water’, says Brahmavar.

“We have reached over 400 flats to create awareness and share insights on the possibility of converting any waste water into high quality drinking water. We showed them live lab reports from our commercial installation,” he added.

Despite showing them enough evidence and examples, one apartment did not agree to reuse the water for domestic use.

When we hear the term ‘recycled water’, most people never think about the potable potential of recycled water. You always think that recycled water is for secondary use. This is the perception we aim to change.

“We had a client who said it was safe to drink recycled water only in Singapore, not in India, because they didn’t trust Indian technologies and Indian companies. It wasn’t easy to change their mindset,” he recalls.

“Instead, we decided to closely monitor industries. We have found a win-win solution for both apartments and industries,” he added.

Most industries rely on water tankers for their fresh water needs. Although some treat their wastewater, they are unable to obtain high quality water due to the inefficiency of the wastewater treatment plants.

“We have created a system that allows industries to buy treated high-quality wastewater from us, currently 80% through apartments that release treated wastewater.”

Another problem they face is the water tankers in the area.

“Many were not happy with us recycling waste water, as most apartments today rely on water tankers to discharge unused waste water. We faced strong opposition from them. We are in the process of making our water distribution systems industrial-grade, which makes it a win-win for tankers and us.

Development history

Bosson Whitewater currently operates with well-known names like Brigade Orion Mall, RMZ Corp, Soul Space Arena, Vakil Housing and Development Corporation and many others. The startup recently raised US$4.58K in funding from the Indian Angel Network.

The installed capacity of the system as of 2020 is about 34 crore liters of water per year. Brahmavar said this year’s initiative will affect 50 crore liters of water conservation.


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“We are targeting 500 crore liters in the next three years. Our system directly allows for water savings. If Boson Whitewater had not been installed in those areas, the entire 34 crore liters of water would have gone straight to the drains without any use. At Boson Whitewater, we ensure that the most precious resource is recycled.”

Future plans

This financial year, Bossan Whitewater wants to install the system on ten large flats, saving around 50 crore liters of water. It also wants to set up similar systems in IT parks and malls. Next financial year he wants to move to Hyderabad and Chennai and focus on the same markets.

We want to be a water service company that focuses on selling high quality water. In the next few years, we have to save 500 million liters of water in the next three years through our collaboration and partnership with various civic forums and industries, he said.


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