Over 75% of all sewage treatment facilities in the UK treat the wastewater from less than 2,000 population equivalents. 

To ensure financial and operational carbon sustainability the water industry is looking for more innovative solutions to treatment rather than necessarily choosing to close these works to pump to larger facilities.

This specialist one-day short course covers the design principles of the most commonly used biofilm technologies, new developments in other low energy technologies, and offers practical tools for technology assessment, selection and research.

At a glance

Course structure

The course is organised as a combination of lectures (50%), networking (25%), and workshop sessions (25%).

What you will learn

On successful completion of this short course you will be able to:

  • Describe key components and design criteria employed for all the technologies covered,
  • Critically assess and select technologies, commercially available or new developments, according to the key pillars for technology selection based on project or treatment scheme drivers.

These outcomes are expected to aid participants when working in process engineering, research and development, and investment planning roles in the water industry.

Core content

The introductory lecture covers the principles required for understanding biological treatment systems and sets the scene for technology appraisals, innovation and design. The removal mechanisms for each the technologies will be covered in detail to enable a fundamental process understanding. Each technology will be discussed in terms of process resilience and reliability, tradeoffs, and future proofing.

  • Definition of 'low' energy treatment systems and principles of technology assessment,
  • Design, performance, innovation, tradeoffs, and challenges of LETS,
  • Case studies from the UK and the rest of the world,
  • Trickling filters,
  • Rotating Biological Contactors,
  • Wetlands and Reed Beds,
  • Algae bioreactors,
  • Next generation anaerobic ponds,
  • Putting it all together – creating robust flowsheets.

Who should attend

Those in roles in process engineering, research and development, and investment planning roles in the water industry.



(20% discount for Cranfield alumni, 10% discount for colleagues of alumni)

£275 - Professional/trade association discount

£265 - Multiple bookings*

* Minimum of five delegates

Accommodation options and prices

This is a non-residential course. If you would like to book accommodation on campus, please contact Mitchell Hall or Cranfield Management Development Centre directly. Further information regarding our accommodation on campus can be found here.

Alternatively you may wish to make your own arrangements at a nearby hotel.

Location and travel

Cranfield University is situated in Bedfordshire close to the border with Buckinghamshire. The University is located almost midway between the towns of Bedford and Milton Keynes and is conveniently situated between junctions 13 and 14 of the M1.

London Luton, Stansted and Heathrow airports are 30, 90 and 90 minutes respectively by car, offering superb connections to and from just about anywhere in the world.

For further location and travel details

Location address

Cranfield University
College Road
MK43 0AL

Read our Professional development (CPD) booking conditions.