Projects Supported By Science Foundation

Water Resources Planning for the State of Gujarat –TAHAL Project

The projected job was assigned to M/s TAHAL consulting Engineers of Israel by the Government of Gujarat in collaboration with GSFC Science Foundation.

The basic objective of the study was to prepare a comprehensive report suggesting ways to enhance and augment water availability and supply reliability for the various sectors and regions in Gujarat state. Also, alternatives for augmentation, conservation, management and efficient utilization of water resources along with the implementation of policies and legislative measures were to be considered.

In the framework of this water resources model, the ways explored to augment and conserve the state water resources were :

  •     Transfer of surplus water from South Gujarat to North Gujarat
  •     Transfer of surplus water from South Gujarat to Narmada canal HEAD Reach
  •     Temporary use of interstate water
  •     The combined operation of reservoirs
  •     Artificial recharge of water in Mehsana region
  •     Wastewater reuse for Agriculture.

The consultant has submitted the final reports detailing the comprehensive water management action plan with respect to current as well as forecasted water availability and demand, up to 2025.

Recharge Bore Well Research

Groundwater depletion is a major problem in the Saurashtra region, about 75 % of irrigation potential is dependent on good irrigation hence artificial recharge of groundwater has attained prime importance. Various techniques of artificial recharge are in practice and among them, some of the techniques have been already proved successful, experimentally.

For one such experiment, Science Foundation collaborated with the Bhavnagar University and carried out research studies on the constructed recharge bore well at village Rupavati in Gariyadhar taluka of Bhavnagar district. As a part of the study, detailed geohydrological investigations were carried out by an inventory of open good sections and existing running tube wells in the area with a view to deciphering subsurface groundwater controlling features at different depths. In addition, studies related to rainfall hydrograph analysis of the last 10 years, the study of water table contour maps, quality contour maps, and other geohydrological maps were also carried out. Pumping tests were also conducted on two open wells in different directions from recharge bore well for computation of the distance between two wells and other important aquifer parameters required for groundwater estimation. Finally, detailed geoelectrical resistivity survey was conducted and potential fracture zones were identified at different depths complementing the recharge bore well.

GSFC Science Foundation Chair in Sustainable Development

While entire of the Saurashtra region suffers inadequacy of water, qualitatively as well as quantitatively, this project attempts to highlight the emerging issues in water management based on a field research conducted in one of the districts in region viz. Bhavnagar district.

The collaborative project was a part of the outcome of the idea to establish a chair at the Bhavnagar University to conduct and support the research initiatives in the area of water resources management.

The broad objectives of the study were to highlight the management options available and compare and contrast the different water problems and present how micro-planning approaches could mitigate the overall problem of water insecurity. The project report comprises of three components: (a) study of water management in Bhavnagar district with special reference to four sample villages (b) water management and peoples’ participation as a sociological study and (c) study of quality of groundwater with regard to its suitability for drinking and irrigation.

Demonstration & Monitoring Programme of Percolation Wells for Wastewater Renovation & Reuse

The project was initiated in the housing colony in Ahmedabad as a collaborative effort to basically try & test the renovation of the grey water. The general objective of the project was to evaluate the efficiency of percolation well system as an easily replicable technology in terms of infiltration of rainwater or as a water harvesting system, as a renovation system of the storm and grey water (non-toiletry wastewater) and finally its reuse for nonpotable household applications.

The project components included construction of percolation well system, three shallow observation wells for routine monitoring of the quantity and quality of the stormwater and in-flowing grey water. Three observation wells tapping different aquifer depths were constructed to capture maximum possible horizontal & vertical flow variation.

Rain Water Harvesting and Well Recharging

In June 2004, on the occasion of World Environment Day, GSFC in consultation with Science Foundation inaugurated two rainwater harvesting & open well recharging schemes in the GSFC campus. Both the schemes were subsequently implemented before the onset of monsoon in that year. Basically, these project was undertaken to assist the parent company-GSFC in implementing the rainwater harvesting schemes, which has become mandatory for all the industrial units as directed by the Gujarat Pollution Control Board. The objective is to recharge the stormwater through the available well structure.

As proposed under scheme I, the stormwater from the canal draining towards Bajuwa village was to be harvested and drain into an open well situated near the demonstration (Karachi Farm) of GSFC. The stormwater was to be recharged through a 450 m long pipe of 600 mm diameter. However, in view of the distance & well location feasibility, an open well in the demonstration farm was selected and recharged. It is estimated that about 1.08 lakh liters of water have been recharged through open well in the year 2004. Science Foundation has been monitoring the water quality of the well.

Under scheme II, an open abandoned well in Amrakunj sector, behind 8-type quarters in Fertilizernagar township has been selected for recharging by diverting the stormwater from one of the drains. It is estimated that approximately 1.63 lakh liters of water were recharged during the monsoon of 2005.

Science Foundation has also provided the technical assistance to the polymer unit of GSFC in recharging one of the bore wells by rainwater.

On the occasion of World Environment Day on 5th June 2004, a function was jointly organized by the GSFC and GSFC Science Foundation to launch the rainwater harvesting schemes in the premises of GSFC. The function was presided over by the chairman, GSFC Science Foundation and Managing Director, GSFC, Shri A.K.Luke. The lecture series was followed by the visit of the members to the actual project's site of the foundation and then inauguration of the GSFC’s water harvesting & well recharging project at the Bajuwa gate. GSFC has proposed phase wise implementation of four different project schemes for rainwater harvesting for which technical assistant will be provided by Foundation.

Analysis of Arsenic in Groundwater Samples and Controlling Arsenic by Biobased Technologies

The project is proposed to analyze groundwater for arsenic contamination and will focus on bio-based technology for controlling the concentration of arsenic. Although there are several methods for the treatment of arsenic in view of treatment costs and recurring expenses involved, they are not practiced. Also, some of the methods are not even eco-friendly. The present project will propose to develop a viable eco-friendly treatment for arsenic contamination in groundwater samples of Hyderabad covering both residential & industrial areas based on the Coagulation-flocculation techniques.

Nano Technology to Clean Water in Developing Nations: Poor Man’s Filter

The basic objective of the project is to develop a low-cost water purification method using nanosilver coated silica for removing bacteria and other contaminants from water. Nanosilver can remove bacteria, chemicals, viruses and other contaminants from water more effectively than conventional water purification methods. The attractiveness of the GSF Nano Silver Filter is that it has no moving parts, no electrical energy required, and no RO membranes. It will be one of the cheapest water filters to be made available in the market. It is assumed that the filter will purify about 20 liters of water per day and will have a shelf life of about six months. The cost will be kept approximately around Rs. 500 per filter canister. The filter will be of cylindrical shape with the height of 1.0 foot and width of 5.0 inches. The research output in terms of publications/ patent will be registered in the name of GSFC Science Foundation.