iMETland. A new generation of Microbial Electrochemical Wetland for effective decentralized wastewater treatment

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iMETland project (http://imetland.eu/) aims at unleashing the small community economies potential through innovative wastewater treatments technologies, creating a virtuous circle connecting water, energy, ICT , land resources and safeguarding the environment.

The project maximises the innovation potential of the following technical features, to be tested and validated at four different geographical locations: Mediterranean (Spain), North-Europe (Denmark), South-America (Argentina) and North-America (Mexico):

  • Biofilters outperformance: the combination of electroactive bacteria with electroconductive material leads to 10-fold higher depuration rates than classical techniques;
  • Wastewater disinfestation: wastewater will be converted in pathogen-free water, suitable for irrigation;
  • Zero-Energy operation cost: iMETland units are designed to work under grid-free conditions;
  • ICT remote control: the conversion of sewage treatment into electric current can be used as an output signal to control the process through users’ ICT toold developed byA-CING;
  • Landscape beautification: iMETland units are well integrated with the surrounding environment.

The innovation in iMETland stands in the balanced integration of technologies, which are wisely amalgamated in the environment. Exploiting the combination of water sector, energy, ICT and land resources, the project paves the way to solve small communities wastewater treatment needs in a cost effective, energy efficient and environmental friendly manner. Innovation is expected to bring the following added value to the wastewater treatment sector:

  • Offering a new tool: iMETland offers a new tool for maximizing the reuse of water in small or isolated communities.
  • Cost minimization: iMETland minimizes costs of wastewater treatment for small communities (ca. 200 PE).
  • Innovation and landscape care: iMETland reduces by 10-fold the extension of land need for natural wastewater treatments and integrates the treatment system into the landscape.
  • User autonomy: iMETland enhances end-user autonomy and satisfaction, making use of user-friendly technologies for monitoring.
  • Replicability: iMETland accelerates market uptake of the technologies by:
  • testing the technologies at four different locations world-wide
  • raising awareness towards European citizens upon iMETland approach as a sustainable way to decentralize wastewater treatment.

iMETland is led by IMDEA Water and is composed by 11 partners from 4 different EU member states and two associated countries (Argentina and Mexico): Foundation CENTA, Aqua-Consult Ingenieros, PriceWaterhouseCoopers and Piroeco Bioenergy (Spain); Aston University (United Kingdom): Aarhus Universitet and Kilian Water (Denkmark); the European research media center, youris.com (Belgium); INTEMA (Argentina) and IMTA (México).

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