News | October 30, 2017

International Desalination Association Announces Award Winners For Technical Program At 2017 IDA World Congress

The International Desalination Association (IDA) announces the winners of awards related to the Technical Program at the 2017 IDA World Congress in São Paulo, Brazil.

Presentation Awards
Awards for the best oral and written papers presented as part of the Technical Program were conferred in five categories. Winners were selected by members of the World Congress Awards Committee, using a weighted percentage score that is applied to criteria for each award. The World Congress Awards Committee was chaired by Borja Blanca. Members were Dr. Mike Dixon, Belen Gutierrez, Jr. Jochen Kallenberg, Dr. In S. Kim, Shawn Meyer-Steele, Manuel Manjon, Alistair Munro, Noemi Sanchez, Rodrigo Segovia and Greg Wetterau.

  • State-of-the-Art, for the best paper that presents the application of an established desalination or water reuse technology in a way that reflects the best engineering practices in all aspects of the project or topic presented.
    Winner: Sahil R. Shah, M.Sc, Graduate Student, Global Engineering and Research Lab, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA, for “Optimal Design of a Batch Electrodialysis System for Domestic Desalination.”
  • Innovation, for the best paper that presents an innovative desalination or water reuse technology that has reached the commercial stage but is not yet considered to be widely adopted.
    Winner: Sergio Salinas Rodríguez, M.Sc, Ph.D., Senior Lecturer, IHE Delft Institute for Water Education, Environmental Engineering and Water Technology Department, The Netherlands, for “A New Method of Assessing Bacterial Growth in SWRO Systems: Method Development and Applications.”
  • Research and Development, for the best paper that presents fundamental or applied research of a technology or concept related to desalination or water reuse that is at a pre-commercialization stage, but shows interesting signs of development that could lead to game-changing discoveries or technologies once at maturity.
    Winner: Raphael Rodrigues, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Polytechnic School of Engineering, University of São Paulo, Brazil, for “Direct Potable Reuse in Brazil - A Pilot Plant Study.”
  • Environment and Sustainability, for the best paper that presents a desalination or water reuse research topic, case study, technology or any project in such a way that it demonstrates how desalination can be applied while respecting the environment and applying the best sustainability principles.
    Winner: Sylvain Donnaz, B.S, Strategic Development Engineer, Suez International Treatment Infrastructure, France, for “Sustainable Infrastructure for Water Reuse in Agriculture: The As Samra WWTP in Jordan.”
  • Young Leader, for the best paper presented by a member of the IDA Young Leaders Program demonstrating scientific originality on a topic that is relevant and important to the fields of desalination and/or water reuse.
    Winner: Nicholas Charles Nelson, B.Eng, Head of Competence Centre for Water Treatment, Omya International, Switzerland, for “Techno-Economic Evaluation and Pilot Testing of New Stabilization Process for Desalinated Water.”

Emerging Leader Achievement Award
Almar Water sponsored the Emerging Leader Achievement Award in Desalination and Water Reuse at this year’s World Congress, made to a member of the IDA Young Leaders Program, with a monetary award of $5,000 US.

Winner: Steven Lam, NPI Department Manager, Gradiant Corporation, United States.

Delegate-voted Awards
In addition, delegates at the World Congress cast their votes for winners in four categories:

  • Best Moderator: Sue Murphy, Chief Executive Officer, Water Corporation, Australia, for “Desalination in Australia” in Technical Program Plenary Session
  • Best Session Chairman: Guillaume Clairet, Chief Operating Officer, H2O Innovation, Canada, for session on Desalination and Water Reuse in Industrial Applications II – Mining and ZLD
  • Best Presenter: Daniel Baaklini, B.Eng, M.Sc, Research Engineer, Veolia Research & Innovation, France, for paper entitled “Optimized One-Step Pretreatment Enhancing the Benefits of Air Flotation and Media Filtration.”
  • Best Poster: Val S. Frenkel. Ph.D., P.E., D.WRE, Vice President, Greeley and Hansen, United States, for paper “Desalination or Water Reuse.”

About IDA
The International Desalination Association is a non-profit association that serves more than 2,600 core members in 60 countries and reaches an additional 4,000 affiliate members. Its membership comprises scientists, end-users, engineers, consultants and researchers from governments, corporations and academia. IDA is associated with the United Nations as part of a growing international network of non-governmental organizations (NGOs). For more information, visit

Source: The International Desalination Association