Contemporary issue

May 2021 Film contributions about the KaWaTech joint project

Three films about the KaWaTech project were broadcast on Vietnamese television. In addition to the hard-living conditions of the mountain peoples and the problems with the water supply, the results and achievements of the joint project with the aim of a future-oriented water supply are shown. The pilot water pumping system, which now supplies more than 10.000 people in the region with water, is presented with fascinating images and animations.

The 15-minute films are available at:
Part 1:
Part 2:
Part 3:


April 2021 Construction of pipeline to Lung Lu with storage tank completed

The construction of the pipeline and the storage tank for the photovoltaic-based pumping system has been completed. The final design was developed in cooperation with the Vietnamese project partner VIGMR and a Vietnamese planning office. The construction measures were implemented by a local construction company and were supervised by VIGMR in close coordination with KIT.


January 2021 Start of construction of the conveyor pipe to Lung Lu (photovoltaic-based pumping system)

The mountain village of Lung Lu consists of 29 households with over 200 inhabitants. Due to its exposed location, the village cannot be supplied gravitationally through the already built water supply system. Since the village faces major concerns with water scarcity, especially in the dry season, a sustainable supply with a photovoltaic-based pumping system will be implemented into the existing infrastructure.

The pumping technology (as well as the hydropower-driven pumps of the Seo Ho pilot plant) was developed by the industrial partner KSB AG and is currently on its way to Vietnam by sea. An environmental impact assessment for the construction project has already been carried out and the building permit has been issued. A few days ago, the construction of the pipeline to Lung Lu and the storage tank in Lung Lu was started.


Accompaniment of the KaWaTech team by a film team

A film team accompanied the KIT researchers as they entered the cave systems in search of further underground hydropower potentials. In addition to fascinating shoots of bizarre caves, the film also provides rare insights into the harsh living conditions of the mountain peoples of the Dong Van Karst Plateau, which was included in the UNESCO Global Geopark Network in 2010.
The broadcast of the approx. 15 min. contribution takes place at the beginning of the documentary "Adventure Vietnam" and was shown on

    DO, 04.06.2020 at 20:15 on ARTE
    SO, 28.06.2020 at 19:30 on ZDF (TerraX).

The film is available in the ZDF-Mediathek:


Effects of the Corona Pandemic

In the context of the current spread of the Coronavirus, a temporary travel ban to Vietnam is in effect for all travelers from the Schengen area since 15th March. In conjunction with the recommendations of the German government, trips to Vietnam are therefore currently not possible. However, after the extensive training in the last months, the water supply can be operated properly by the local water authority. By online monitoring of the supply system (KSB-Guard) and by continuous communication with the operating staff via social media, efforts are being made to ensure the best possible support from the German project partners.


March 2020: Regular operation of the water pumping and supply system for the local population

In March 2020, the Seo Ho power plant was put into regular operation by the local water authority CERWASS and the German project partners. In the course of this, the completed feeder system was also connected to the existing distribution network of the district capital Dong Van. As a result, the nearly 5,000 residents of the district capital and several residents of the surrounding settlements can now be supplied with water on a sustainable basis.


16.01.2020 Young talents - science and music

As part of the event series "Junge Talente – Wissenschaft und Musik", the KaWaTech and KaWaTech Solutions research projects for the development of a sustainable drinking water supply in the UNESCO Global Geopark Dong Van were presented to a broad public.


30.10.2019 BMBF/MOST Conference "German Science Day", Hanoi, Vietnam

On 30th October 2019, the KaWaTech project was presented at the German Science Day event organized by BMBF, including an overview lecture, poster session, and several interviews for Vietnamese TV stations.



26.10.2019 Inauguration and official handover of the Seo Ho powerplant to HGPC

On 26th October 2019, the inauguration and official handover of the hydro-powered pumping system to the provincial government of Ha Giang and the local operator CERWASS was celebrated by a solemn ceremony. In addition to the project management, representatives of the BMBF, the project executing agency, and KSB AG traveled to the remote mountainous region for the ceremony.


Einweihung und feierliche Übergabe der Förderanlage Seo Ho an HGPC

Einweihung und feierliche Übergabe der Förderanlage Seo Ho an HGPC


24.10.2019 KAAD Summer School in Hanoi

On 24th October 2019, a "Summer School" on "Innovative Karst Water Technologies" organized by the Katholischer Akademischer Ausländerdienst (KAAD) was held in Hanoi. The German project team was represented by lectures of the project partners KIT (IWG, AGW), TZW, KSB AG as well as Spekul on the German and Belgian side and by lectures of the project partners VIGMR, TLU, and CERWASS on the Vietnamese side.

KAAD Summer School


July/August 2019 Optimization of hydraulic infrastructure, training of operating staff, and validation of water allocation in the distribution system

In July 2019, various technical optimizations were implemented on the hydraulic infrastructure of the water supply system, in particular, to reduce the concentration of suspended particles. For this purpose, the capacity of the water withdrawn site was limited, the flow in the intake pool was homogenized by a lamella wall, and a floating beam was installed to remove flotsam.

Optimierung der hydraulischen Infrastruktur

Optimierung der hydraulischen Infrastruktur

Furthermore, the operating staff was trained for regular maintenance work, the different operating scenarios of the water pumping and supply system, and the alarm management system. Subsequently, the pumping modules were set into operation by the operating staff.

Optimierung der hydraulischen Infrastruktur

Additional weir spillway systems were installed in the distribution system for the controlled distribution of the pumped water, followed by initial operational tests.

Optimierung der hydraulischen Infrastruktur


July 2019 Installation of particle counter in drinking water treatment container

On 16th July, a particle counter was installed by the company Klotz in cooperation with KIT (AGW-Hyd) and TZW in the drinking water treatment container, currently stationed in Villingen-Schwenningen (Hydro-Elektrik). The particle counter measures the treated water as a final check; the data are sent to a control panel and can be downloaded remotely. In combination with a large number of further controlled parameters (turbidity, pH value, electrical conductivity, oxygen, flow rate), online monitoring of the power plant is possible. The final goal is the implementation of an early warning system based on all monitored data.

Installation Partikelzähler


June 2019 Further test runs and system adjustments of the conveying system

After successful commissioning in March, further test runs of the pilot plant were carried out in June with a team of German and Vietnamese employees of KSB AG, taking into account the discharge conditions during the rainy season; some additional adjustments were made. Besides, an adapted monitoring system was implemented to ensure a safe and sustainable operation of the power plant. Therefore, a turbidity sensor was installed at the intake pool as an indicator for the load of suspended solids.

Testläufe und Systemanpassungen


March 2019 WATER IS RUNNING - test commissioning of the conveyor system successful!

In February, the construction work on the high-pressure delivery pipeline could finally be completed after some disruptions due to a tropical storm. Subsequently, the hydropower-driven pumping modules were put into operation on a test basis together with employees of KSB AG and Keller Industriemontagen GmbH. For the first time, water was pumped to the central distribution tank in Ma U village, which is located about 600 m above sea level. However, final work on the distribution system is still required to transfer the water to Dong Van City and surrounding mountain villages.

Testweise Inbetriebnahme



20.11.2018 Status workshop in Karlsruhe

On 20th November 2018, the annual KaWaTech Solutions status workshop took place at KIT, where all partners presented the current status of their activities. The workshop offers a platform for a professional exchange as well as the coordination of upcoming activities.

Statusworkshop 2018


October 2018 Construction of distribution and storage tanks for the water distribution system almost completed

The construction of the central distribution tank with the multi-chamber system in Ma U and the installation of the water withdrawn location are completed. Further, the work on the storage tank and reservoir for Dong Van City is also almost completed. The Dong Van pressure breaker reservoir is currently under construction.

Oktober 2018 Bau von Verteil- und Speicherbehälter


June 2018 Steelwork of the high-pressure delivery pipeline

Since March 2018, work has been underway on the steelwork for the construction of the high-pressure pipeline. Due to the technical and natural conditions, the work is very complex. KIT employees in cooperation with VIGMR are supervising the works and providing technical advice to ensure adequate execution quality. Besides, Keller Industriemontagen GmbH provided on-site training for welders and urgent recommendations for quality monitoring.

Juni 2018 Stahlarbeiten der Hochdruck-Förderleitung


April 2018 Earthworks and concrete works for the high-pressure pipeline

Since January 2018, the earthwork and concrete work for the construction of the high-pressure pipeline are in progress. The heavy work in the steep slopes of the pipeline route is mostly done by hand by the local population and coordinated by local construction companies.

April 2018 Erd- und Betonarbeiten der Hochdruck-Förderleitung


02. – 03.03.2018 HRK delegation in the project area.

From March 2nd – 3rd, 2018, a delegation with high-ranking representatives of the German Rectors' Conference (HRK) visited the project area. The HRK was represented by the President Prof. Dr. Horst Hippler, the Head of the International Department Ms. Marijke Wahlers as well as Mr. Stefan Hase-Bergen from the DAAD field office in Hanoi.



15.11.2017 Status Workshop in Karlsruhe

On November 15th, 2017, the second KaWaTech Solutions Workshop took place in Karlsruhe. All partners presented the current status of their activities.


06. – 13.10.2017 BMBF delegation in the project area

From October 6th – 13th, 2017, a delegation with high-ranking representatives of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and the Project Management Agency (PTKA) visited the project region. During this trip, the Seo Ho the construction site of the Seo Ho power plant, including the distribution network, was visited with great interest. Besides, several coordination meetings with the Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) and the relevant authorities of the provincial government took place.

BMBF-Delegation im Projektgebiet


July 2017 Distribution and storage tanks of the water distribution system under construction

Currently, construction works are being carried out on the tanks of the distribution infrastructure. The central distribution tank Ma U with a multi-chamber system and the decentralized storage tanks in villages are almost completed. Construction work on storage tanks and reservoirs for Dong Van City is in full swing.

Verteil- und Speicherbehälter des Wasserverteilungssystems im Bau


07.06.2017 Visit of a delegation from Vietnam

During the two-day visit of the Vietnamese delegation around the MOST Vice Minister Tran Viet Than, the Lake Constance Water Supply (Wasserwerk Sipplinger Berg), the Schluchseewerk AG (cavern power plant Säckingen), and the KSB AG (headquarters in Frankenthal) were visited.

The BMBF was represented by the Karlsruhe Project Management Agency in the person of Dr. Rüdiger Furrer and Dr. Heiko Schwegmann. The project was represented by Prof. Franz Nestmann and Dr. Peter Oberle (KIT) and by Dr. Jochen Fritz from the industrial partner KSB AG.


April 2017 Construction work on the powerhouse of the conveyor modules largely completed

Following the successful installation of the two pumping modules, construction work on the powerhouse and tailwater pool is nearly complete, too.



25.03.2017 Coordination meeting with Ha Giang Peoples' Committee

On March 25th, 2017, a meeting of the project coordinator and the Ha Giang Peoples' Committee as well as several representatives of different ministries was held. The current status of the implementation measures at the Seo Ho pumping system as well as the planned activities within the framework of "KaWaTech Solutions" (including the implementation of innovative systems for water treatment and photovoltaic-supported pumping systems) were discussed in detail.



08.12.2016 Status workshop in Karlsruhe

On December 8th, 2016, the annual KaWaTech workshop took place in Karlsruhe All partners presented the current status of their activities.


Sept./Oct. 2016 Installation of the pumping modules at the WKA Seo Ho site

Since the end of September, the two pumping modules and the pipes in the future powerhouse area were installed at the Seo Ho power plant. This work was intensively supported by Keller Industriemontagen GmbH from Durmersheim as well as representatives of the local partners HGPC, VIGMR, and CERWASS.



14. – 15.09.2016 Conference "3rd International Rotating Equipment Conference (IREC)", Düsseldorf

In mid-September, the KaWaTech project was presented at the "3rd International Rotating Equipment Conference (IREC)" in Düsseldorf together with the industrial partner KSB AG.


05. – 07.09.2016 Conference "Eurokarst - The European karst conference 2016", Neuchâtel, Switzerland

In early September, the project was presented at the conference "Eurokarst - The European karst conference 2016" in Neuchâtel, Switzerland.


August 2016 Trip of the coordinator to the project area

In order to be able to implement the installation of the conveyor system in September/October, support from VIGMR was required concerning the import of the machines, pipe attachments, and fittings. In this context, the coordinator was represented at various appointments in Hanoi as well as in Ha Giang Province in August 2016.

Reise 08/2016


July 2016 Accompaniment of the construction work and further coordination

Within the scope of a field trip, the construction measures for the repair and hydraulic optimization of the Seo Ho turbine were temporarily accompanied and further coordination was carried out.

Begleitung 0/2016


March/April/June 2016 Fieldwork

In the first half of the year, scientists from various partners were present in the project area several times to collect data and to conduct surveys and field tests.

Feldarbeiten 06/2016


03.12.2015 Conference "Water and Sustainability Research under the German-Vietnamese Cooperation", Hanoi, Vietnam

On December 3rd, 2015, the KaWaTech project was presented at the conference "Water and Sustainability Research under the German-Vietnamese Cooperation" organized by the VD Office in Hanoi.


02.12.2015 Conference "German Science Day - 40 years of Diplomatic Relations between Vietnam and Germany", Hanoi, Vietnam

On December 2nd, 2015, the KaWaTech project was presented during the German Science Day event at the Vietnamese-German Center of the Hanoi University of Science and Technology.

Konferenz 12/2015


16. – 23.11.2015 Vietnamese KaWaTech delegation at KIT

From November 16th – 23rd, a delegation with representatives of the Vietnamese Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) and the Vietnamese KaWaTech project partners VIGMR and WRU visited KIT and KSB AG for technical exchange. Besides, excursions were made to, the municipal water supply Karlsruhe, the pumped storage power station Häusern of Schluchseewerk AG, and the Rheinkraftwerk Albbruck-Dogern AG.



12.11.2015 Status Workshop, Karlsruhe

Status workshop of the German KaWaTech partners at KIT.


19. – 20.10.2015 Conference VACI 2015, Hanoi, Vietnam

The KaWaTech project was presented at the 4th conference of the Vietnam Water Cooperation Initiative (VACI 2015) in Hanoi on October 19th, 2015.


02. – 03.10.2015 KaWaTech Summer School

On October 2nd – 3rd, 2015, a Summer School on "Water Resources Management in Karst Regions" organized by the KaWaTech network was held in Hanoi. In addition to a lecture program, a field trip to water management facilities in the karst region of Ninh Binh is planned.

Summerschool 10/2015


17. – 18.09.2015 BMBF Workshop "Resources and Sustainability internationally - lessons learned"

The KaWaTech project was presented at the BMBF workshop "Resources and Sustainability internationally - lessons learned" in Bonn.


19.08.2015 MoST delegation at KIT

On August 19th a delegation with representatives of the Vietnamese Ministry of Science and Technology (MoST) and the MoST/BMBF office in Hanoi as well as representatives of the Project Management Agency Karlsruhe (PTKA) visited KIT/IWG. The status of the KaWaTech project was discussed and the Theodor Rehbock hydraulic engineering laboratory was visited.

Jul./Aug./Sep. 2015 Fieldwork

In July, August, and September, scientists from several subprojects were in the project area for data collection and to conduct surveys and field experiments.

Jul./Aug. 2015 Coordination for the construction of the pilot plant (Concept 1)

Since the handover of the pre-design of the planned pilot plant (concept 1) at the Seo Ho hydropower plant, the project network has been supporting the preparation of the final engineering design by the Vietnamese partners. To coordinate the further procedure and clarify open questions, meetings were held in July and August with the authorities of the province and the district as well as with the Vietnamese engineering companies responsible for the implementation planning.

March 2015 Handover of the pre-designs for the planned pilot plant (concept 1) and joint field trip of TP1, TP2, TP3 and TP7

During the field trip of several subprojects to the project area Dong Van in March 2015, further investigations and measurements for the work packages 1 to 4 were carried out. The Sang Ma Sao cave was further explored in cooperation with SPEKUL and the Vietnamese scientific partner VIGMR. At a meeting in Ha Giang with the Vietnamese project partners, the pre-design for the planned pilot plant (concept 1) was officially handed over and the further procedure for its implementation was coordinated.

December 2014 Newsletter of the KIT Climate and Environment Center

In the current newsletter of the KIT Climate and Environment Center (issue 2/2014), the KaWaTech project is presented with the title Karst Water Utilization in Vietnam: Innovative Pumping Technologies to Secure Water Supply in Mountainous Regions:


November 2014 Coordination of planned construction measures and field trip

During a trip to the project area, the planned construction measures for the realization of the pilot plant were coordinated with representatives of the responsible Vietnamese authorities (Ha Giang People's Committee, Dong Van People's Committee), the operator of the turbines at the Seo Ho River (EVN), the Vietnamese science partner (VIGMR) as well as the construction company contracted by the Vietnamese side. In this context, the locations of the planned measures (access road, PaT/pump modules, pipeline routes, container locations) were also inspected and determined. Besides, the trip was used for further investigations and measurements.

Jul./Aug. 2014 Fieldwork of the geoscientists

On July 15th, a group of five geoscientists (KIT/AGW and KIT/IMG) left for a six-week trip to the project area. The trip aims to collect further geological and hydrogeological data, especially from the rainy season, and to deepen the cooperation with the Vietnamese partners.

18.06.2014 Handover of the Bill of Quantities for the planned pilot plant (Concept 1)

The Bill of Quantities (BoQ) developed together with KSB AG was handed over to the Vietnamese partners. With the completion and handover of the BoQ, an important interim goal has been achieved. Based on the BoQ, the Vietnamese partners will apply for the necessary budgets to execute the construction project. The next steps are the preparation of the pre-design by the German partners until the end of the year and based on this the preparation of the final engineering design by the Vietnamese partners so that the first construction measures can be implemented at the beginning of 2015.

Feb./Mar. 2014 Work of the overall network in the project area

Following the kick-off meeting, comprehensive works of all sub-projects took place in the project area.

Feb. 17. – 18. 2014 Kick-off meeting, Hanoi

Kick-off meeting of the KaWaTech collaborative project in Hanoi with representatives of the ministries, the Vietnamese and German collaborative partners, the authorities of Ha Giang province, and the Geopark administration.

02.12.2013 Introduction Workshop, Ha Giang

Introduction Workshop during the first trip to the project area in Ha Giang with representatives of the Vietnamese and German collaborative partners, the MOST, the authorities of Ha Giang province as well as the Geopark administration.

07.10.2013 Kick-off meeting of the German collaborative partners, Karlsruhe

First meeting of the German collaborative partners at KIT in Karlsruhe.