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AquiSense Case Study


Enabling Safe Water and Habitat Management Onboard ISS and Future Human Space Exploration Vehicles and Planetary Outposts
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BIOWYSE is a European Union funded program that aims to address biocontamination issues in manned space habitats. The intent of the project is to develop an integrated chemical-free system to control and monitor biomass growth in potable water aboard the ISS.

AquiSense Europe, based in the UK is part of a pan-European consortium of nine companies and institutions that includes Italian company, Thales Alenia Space, a major supplier to the International Space Station.

This project has received funding from the European Commmission’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 687447.


Long-duration manned space exploration requires microbial control in drinking water systems. Traditional chemical solutions have associated supply chain and weight restrictions and require regular resupply missions, making them unviable for deep space exploration. Historically, UV systems have not been considered for space applications due to the fragility and reliability of traditional mercury-based lamps. Simple, low-maintenance systems are essential.


The BIOWYSE project required a compact solution to control biomass growth in the integrated water handling system in both recirculation and direct delivery modes. AquiSense has developed an advanced UV-C LED water Decontamination Module that is currently being laboratory and field tested by the BIOWYSE consortium. The patent protected UV-C LED Decontamination Module includes a number of advanced technologies.

A UV-C LED solution from AquiSense was chosen due to:

  • High durability (e.g. vibration resistance)
  • Lightweight design
  • Extended lifetime through smart operation
  • Advanced system monitoring and control capabilities
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Aquisense - Biowyse product
Aquisense - Biowyse


This technology can provide safe water and habitat management onboard the ISS and future human space exploration vehicles and planetary outposts. The creation of this system has spurred the development of an entirely new generation of UV technologies better suited for challenging environments.
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“AquiSense offers a unique insight into the world of UV-C LED disinfection from their position as knowledge leaders in this new field. The Decontamination Module performs a critical role in the BIOWYSE system and their participation is key to our research efforts.”

– Vincenzo Guarnieri
Consortium Engineering Lead
Thales Alenia Space