The wastewater treatment plants of the future will be expected to meet new demands on the release of phosphorus and nitrogen, as well as compounds that are not easily degradable, such as excreted pharmaceuticals and other kinds of organic compounds.
Efforts must also be directed towards more energy-efficient treatment methods and reductions in the emission of other greenhouse gases. During recent years, waste water has come to be regarded as a resource rather than waste, as it is possible to recover nutrients, energy and useable water. The water supply and sewage industry is thus facing considerable challenges in developing new systems for surface water and waste water that can meet future demands on both purity and resource efficiency. Compact, integrated solutions are often required, which further increases system complexity.
Applied research is being carried out at the department in several areas, often in close collaboration with industry and local authorities.? Projects in progress are associated with urban water infrastructure, focusing on energy efficiency and compact process solutions. Anaerobic digestion, the removal of recalcitrant substances and the handling and treatment of surface water are other key areas.