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System for the removal of organic micropollutants from wastewater treatment plants

The new technology developed by the Spanish University helps to tackle the adverse effects that the discharge into the aquatic environment of organic micropollutants may cause on animals, plants and people. Among these micropollutants there is a group of substances of natural and anthropogenic sources (e.g. pharmaceuticals, pesticides, cosmetics and personal care products, flame retardants, hormones and other industrial chemicals) that have the ability to alter the functions of endocrine system and, therefore, have adverse effects on an organism or its progeny. Conventional systems for wastewater treatment are not designed to remove these compounds, or their removal is only partial, causing a continuous release of such chemicals to the environment. This new technology is adapted to remove these kinds of microprollutants in wastewater treatment plants thanks to the use of lignolytic enzymes in combination with a nanofiltration or ultrafiltration ceramic membrane that retains the enzymes in the system. The system was tested in a bench scale reactor where the experiments carried out have shown very good results as more than 80 % of bisphenol A (BPA) and more than 97 % of nonylphenol (NP) present in the influent were removed.
The university is looking for companies dedicated to the treatment of wastewater that would be interested in licencing the technology adapting it to their specific needs.

» Reference: TOES20170906001/SPAIN

» Sector: Ciencias de la vida

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This project has received funding from the European Union Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) under grant agreement n [310187].