How the world's most advanced flood barrier will save Venice

Climate change is making the threat to Venice from rising seawater ever more urgent. Alfa Laval heat exchangers play an important role in the €5.5bn flood barrier being built to protect this iconic city.

DATE 2023-11-28

Saving Venice with Alfa Laval Alfa-V VDD air heat exchangers

It was in 1966 that the sea level around Venice rose two metres, causing millions of dollars in damage and destroying priceless artwork. Over the next 40 years climate change, rising sea levels, and a sinking city have increased the frequency of acqua alta (high water) and brought urgency to the need for a solution.

That solution is Mose, an innovative flood barrier project featuring a system of 78 mobile gates being constructed at the three openings of the barrier island separating the Venice lagoon from the Adriatic. Under normal circumstances they will lie flat under the water, but when needed, they will be raised by pumping them full of compressed cooled air from Alfa Laval heat exchangers, to prevent rising sea levels from entering the lagoon.


FACTS - Mose: how it works


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Mose is the most innovative system of its kind. It is very flexible at all tide levels. Its operation is quiet. It is respectful of marine life and the environment.”

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PRODUCT - Alfa Laval Alfa-V VDD

Alfa-V VDDBenefits:

  • Reliable performance, Eurovent certified
  • Excellent sound characteristics
  • Favourable capacity/footprint ratio
  • Available with easily cleanable industrial fins
  • Energy efficient - low total cost of ownership

Alfa Laval Alfa-V VDD air cooled liquid cooler

FACTS - The Mose project in figures

Saving Venice - Mose project

1 lock for big ships (at Malamocco)

2 refuge harbours (at Lido and Chioggia)

3 metre-high tide can be withstood

4 mobile barriers

15 minutes average time to close the barriers

30 minutes to open (raise) the barriers

78 mobile barriers in total

1,000 workers involved

2018 estimated year of completion

€5.5bn estimated total cost (as of March 2016)

We worked together from the start to adapt our standard models to their specific requirements, suggesting improvements in terms of materials and new technologies.”