Recent projects with research impact

Sprucing up wastewater for Europe

Cranfield's Water Science Institute (CWSI) is helping the UK water sector to meet EU environmental quality standards by improving the removal of hazardous chemicals during wastewater treatment. With support from UK Water Industry Research (UKWIR), we are working on an alternative approach to conventional tertiary wastewater treatment processes. The process engineering conditions involved in microbial degradation processes, such as activated sludge plants are being optimised in order to avoid the need for tertiary treatments that are high in chemical and energy usage.

Generating profit from waste

A CWSI-led initiative to select the best methods for recovering nutrients from waste streams is highlighting innovative opportunities to ignite future commercial opportunities for waste. CWSI has a NERC catalyst grant to develop a risk based decision analysis tool to inform selection of appropriate nutrient recovery routes from waste streams. For example, a typical large sewage works offers scope for recovery of nutrients from a variety of positions within the treatment train. This generates a range of products from highly processed crystal nutrients, high concentration liquid nutrients, nutrient rich sludge and bio fertiliser. These require different levels of processes and bring a different profile of value.

Recent relevant publications

Eusebi AL, Martin-Garcia N, McAdam EJ, Jefferson B, Lester JN & Cartmell E. (2013) Nitrogen removal from temperate anaerobic-aerobic two-stage biological systems: Impact of reactor type and wastewater strength, Journal of Chemical Technology and Biotechnology, 88 (11): 2107-2114.

Martin Garcia I, Mokosch M, Soares A, Pidou M & Jefferson B. (2013) Impact on reactor configuration on the performance of anaerobic MBRs: Treatment of settled sewage in temperate climates, Water Research, 47 (14): 4853-4860.

Lester J, Jefferson B, Eusebi A-L, McAdam E & Cartmell E. (2013) Anaerobic treatment of fortified municipal wastewater in temperate climates, Journal of Chemical Technology and Biotechnology, 88 (7): 1280-1288.

Stephenson T, Reid E, Avery LM & Jefferson B. (2013) Media surface properties and the development of nitrifying biofilms in mixed cultures for wastewater treatment., Process Safety and Environmental Protection, 91 (4): 321-324.

I decided to come to Cranfield because this project allows me to work on a topic I consider incredibly important from an environmental point of view. At the same time, my project is part of an international network which puts me in contact with several experts and this improves me academically and as a person.

Samuela Guida, Current PhD student