Contact Dr Ana Soares
Areas of expertise
- Energy and the Environment
- Monitoring and Environmental Informatics
- Waste Management and Resource Efficiency
- Water Science and Engineering
Dr Soares holds a MEng in Biotechnology Engineering from Algarve University (Portugal) and a PhD in Environmental Engineering from Lund University (Sweden) (2001-2005) with a project entitled “Biodegradation of the Recalcitrant Endocrine Disruptor Nonylphenol”. Her PhD formed part of national research program COLDREM (Soil Remediation in Cold Climate) and was supported by MISTRA (Swedish Foundation for Strategic Environmental Research) and the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology.
Dr Ana Soares is a Senior Lecturer in Biological Engineering at Cranfield Water Sciences Institute and she is an expert on the behaviour and manipulation of bacterial communities under dynamic conditions, leading to new technologies, optimisation of wastewater treatment and valuable product recovery. Dr Ana Soares applies her research to municipal as well as industrial wastewater treatment, delivering optimised, innovative and economically feasible solutions to produce high quality effluents. Dr Soares has a track record of winning and delivering research for: research council projects through a NERC CASE Studentship and the Portuguese Science and Technology Foundation; organisations such as the Environment Agency (EA) and Waste & Resources Action Programme (WRAP) and European Union (EU) (COST ACTION WATER2020, Nov 2012) and Horizon 2020. Over her 12 years at Cranfield she had the opportunity to deliver projects to industrial clients such as water utilities (Yorkshire Water, Thames Water, Severn Trent, Scottish Water, etc.), petrochemical and chemical industries (Shell, Conoco Philips, Huntsman Chemicals, Nufarm, Tata Steel, etc.) as well as technical suppliers (Warden Biomedia, Hambaker Adams, etc.). A short summary of Dr Soares key research areas, application and science rational are:
1) Development of new technologies - Dr Soares research explores the underpinning science required to develop and manage bioreactors employing new biological organisms, cultures or pathways in order to optimise wastewater treatment and deliver the circular economy. The current focus relates to the utilisation of bacteria that directly precipitate phosphorus as part of their biochemical pathways and hence offer an exciting opportunity for enhanced phosphorus removal and recovery as a product (e.g. bio-struvite and calcium phosphate). Dr Soares is also exploring ion exchangers for removing and recovering nutrients in the EU H2020 SMART-PLANT project (http://smart-plant.eu/).
2) Increase energy efficiency in wastewater treatment plants - Dr Soares has been investigating full-flow anaerobic wastewater treatment for the last 12 years, with the aim to replace energy intensive processes such as activated sludge by energy producing processes (her roles included include flowsheet development, design and operation of pilot plants, development of business cases, etc. with partners such as Yorkshire Water, Thames Water, Severn Trent, Scottish Water and Anglian Water) and application in H2020 nextGen (https://nextgenwater.eu/). Furthermore Dr Soares is a work package leader on the H2020 ENERWATER (http://www.enerwater.eu) that aims to develop, validate and disseminate an innovative standard methodology for continuously assessing, labelling and improving the overall energy performance of wastewater treatment plants.
3) Adaptation of existing processes to enhance biological activity – Dr Soares investigates the improvement of wastewater treatment processes can also be completed by gaining a deeper understanding of existing processes to ensure process optimisation. Her projects have looked into aeration efficiency, bioaugmentation of nitrification processes in biofilm and suspended processes (projects with Tata Steel and Warden Biomedia). Dr Soares often works with the petrochemical and chemical industries to evaluate the biodegradability and toxicity of industrial wastewaters, proposing new processes trains and processes for efficient and low energy consumption treatment. This includes enrichment of microbial communities with capability to biodegrade hazardous pollutants by modifying the normal design and operation as well as the development of hybrid processes (combining, chemical biological and physical processes) to deliver economically feasible solutions.
4) Sensor development - Dr Soares has been working on the development of sensors as a means to optimise the biological processes in wastewater treatment. Dr Soares has developed and tested on the field a new sensor to enhance the feeding rate of anaerobic digesters of sewage sludge. The improved instrumentation and control resulted 30-40% increase in methane production (project with Yorkshire Water). Also Dr Soares has worked on a sensor that measures phosphate in wastewater streams in the laboratory and real-time in wastewater treatment plants.
- Scottish Water
- Thames Water
- Yorkshire Water
- Anglian Water
- Severn Trent
- Environmental Agency
- Warden Biomedia
- Huntsman Chemicals
- Tata Steel
- Technology Strategy Board
Articles In Journals
- Huang X, Guida S, Jefferson B & Soares A (2020) Economic evaluation of ion-exchange processes for nutrient removal and recovery from municipal wastewater, npj Clean Water, 3 (1) Article No. 7.
- Leng Y, Colston R & Soares A (2020) Understanding the biochemical characteristics of struvite bio-mineralising microorganisms and their future in nutrient recovery, Chemosphere, Available online 8 January 2020, Article No. 125799.
- Raper E, Stephenson T, Fisher R, Anderson DR & Soares A (2019) Characterisation of thiocyanate degradation in a mixed culture activated sludge process treating coke wastewater, Bioresource Technology, 288 (September) Article No. 121524.
- Longo S, Mauricio-Iglesias M, Soares A, Campo P, Fatone F, Eusebi AL, Akkersdijk E, Stefani L & Hospido A (2019) ENERWATER – A standard method for assessing and improving the energy efficiency of wastewater treatment plants, Applied Energy, 242 (May) 897-910.
- Bajón Fernández Y, Soares A, Vale P, Koch K, Masse AL & Cartmell E (2019) Enhancing the anaerobic digestion process through carbon dioxide enrichment: Initial insights into mechanisms of utilisation, Environmental Technology, 40 (13) 1744-1755.
- Raper E, Fisher R, Anderson DR, Stephenson T & Soares A (2019) Nitrogen removal from coke making wastewater through a pre-denitrification activated sludge process, Science of the Total Environment, 666 (May) 31-38.
- Muhammad A, Soares A & Jefferson B (2019) The impact of background wastewater constituents on the selectivity and capacity of a hybrid ion exchange resin for phosphorus removal from wastewater, Chemosphere, 224 (June) 494-501.
- Wang KM, Soares A, Jefferson B & McAdam EJ (2019) Comparable membrane permeability can be achieved in granular and flocculent anaerobic membrane bioreactor for sewage treatment through better sludge blanket control, Journal of Water Process Engineering, 28 (April) 181-189.
- Wang KM, Jefferson B, Soares A & McAdam EJ (2018) Sustaining membrane permeability during unsteady-state operation of anaerobic membrane bioreactors for municipal wastewater treatment following peak-flow, Journal of Membrane Science, 564 (October) 289-297.
- Dias J, Bellingham M, Hassan J, Barrett M, Stephenson T & Soares A (2018) Influence of carrier media physical properties on start-up of moving attached growth systems, Bioresource Technology, 266 (October) 463-471.
- Raper E, Stephenson T, Anderson DR, Fisher R & Soares A (2018) Industrial wastewater treatment through bioaugmentation, Process Safety and Environmental Protection, 118 (August) 178-187.
- Raper E, Fisher R, Anderson DR, Stephenson T & Soares A (2018) Alkalinity and external carbon requirements for denitrification-nitrification of coke wastewater, Environmental Technology, 39 (17) 2266-2277.
- Dias J, Bellingham M, Hassan J, Barrett M, Stephenson T & Soares A (2018) Impact of carrier media on oxygen transfer and wastewater hydrodynamics on a moving attached growth system, Chemical Engineering Journal, 351 (November) 399-408.
- Wang KM, Cingolani D, Eusebi AL, Soares A, Jefferson B & McAdam EJ (2018) Identification of gas sparging regimes for granular anaerobic membrane bioreactor to enable energy neutral municipal wastewater treatment, Journal of Membrane Science, 555 (June) 125-133.
- Raper E, Stephenson T, Simões F, Fisher R, Anderson DR & Soares A (2018) Enhancing the removal of pollutants from coke wastewater by bioaugmentation: a scoping study, Journal of Chemical Technology and Biotechnology, 93 (9) 2535-2543.
- Wang KM, Martin Garcia N, Soares A, Jefferson B & McAdam EJ (2018) Comparison of fouling between aerobic and anaerobic MBR treating municipal wastewater, H2Open Journal, 1 (2) 131-159.
- Manzano I, Dias JS, Cannon J & Soares A (2018) Optimization of a full-scale site to achieve total nitrogen removal through implementation of a denitrification-submerged anoxic filter, Water and Environment Journal, 32 (2) 242-249.
- Goodwin L, Carra I, Campo P & Soares A (2018) Treatment options for reclaiming wastewater produced by the pesticide industry, International Journal of Water and Wastewater Treatment, 4 (1).
- Holloway TG & Soares A (2018) Influence of internal fluid velocities and media fill ratio on submerged aerated filter hydrodynamics and process performance for municipal wastewater treatment, Process Safety and Environmental Protection, 114 (February) 179-191.
- Simoes F, Vale P, Stephenson T & Soares A (2018) The role of pH on the biological struvite production in digested sludge dewatering liquors, Scientific Reports, 8 Article No. 7225.
- Alibardi L, Green K, Favaro L, Vale P, Soares A, Cartmell E & Bajón Fernández Y (2017) Performance and stability of sewage sludge digestion under CO 2 enrichment: a pilot study, Bioresource Technology, 245 (Part A) 581-589.
- Raper E, Soares A, Chen J, Sutcliffe A, Aries E, Anderson D & Stephenson T (2017) Enhancing the removal of hazardous pollutants from coke making wastewater by dosing activated carbon to a pilot‐scale activated sludge process, Journal of Chemical Technology and Biotechnology, 92 (9) 2325-2333.
- Bajón Fernández Y, Soares A, Koch K, Vale P & Cartmell E (2017) Bioconversion of carbon dioxide in anaerobic digesters for on-site carbon capture and biogas enhancement - A review, Critical Reviews in Environmental Science and Technology, 47 (17) 1555-1580.
- Simoes F, Vale P, Stephenson T & Soares A (2017) Understanding the growth of the bio-struvite production Brevibacterium antiquum in sludge liquors, Environmental Technology, 39 (17) 2278-2287.
- Longo S, d’Antoni BM, Bongards M, Chaparro A, Cronrath A, Fatone F, Lema JM, Mauricio-Iglesias M, Soares A & Hospido A (2016) Monitoring and diagnosis of energy consumption in wastewater treatment plants. A state of the art and proposals for improvement, Applied Energy, 179 (October) 1251-1268.
- Cookney J, Mcleod A, Mathioudakis V, Ncube P, Soares A, Jefferson B & McAdam EJ (2016) Dissolved methane recovery from anaerobic effluents using hollow fibre membrane contactors, Journal of Membrane Science, 502 141-150.
- Bajón Fernández Y, Green K, Schuler K, Soares A, Vale P, Alibardi L & Cartmell E (2015) Biological carbon dioxide utilisation in food waste anaerobic digesters, Water Research, 87 467-475.
- Raper E, Davies S, Perkins B, Lamb H, Hermanson M, Soares A & Stephenson T (2015) Ecological conditions of ponds situated on blast furnace slag deposits located in South Gare Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), Teesside, UK, Environmental Geochemistry and Health, 37 (3) 545-556.
- Belloir C, Stanford C & Soares A (2015) Energy benchmarking in wastewater treatment plants: the importance of site operation and layout, Environmental Technology, 36 (2) 260-269.
- Bajón Fernández Y, Cartmell E, Soares A, McAdam E, Vale P, Darche-Dugar C & Jefferson B (2015) Gas to liquid mass transfer in rheologically complex fluids, Chemical Engineering Journal, 273 656-667.
- Janson A, Santos A, Hussain A, Judd S, Soares A & Adham S (2015) Biotreatment of hydrate-inhibitor-containing produced waters at low pH, SPE Journal -Richardson-, 20 (6) 1254-1260.
- Soares A, Veesam M, Simoes F, Wood E, Parsons SA & Stephenson T (2014) Bio‐struvite: A new route to recover phosphorus from wastewater, CLEAN - Soil, Air, Water, 42 (7) 994-997.
- Warwick C, Guerreiro A, Gomez-Caballero A, Wood E, Kitson J, Robinson J & Soares A (2014) Conductance based sensing and analysis of soluble phosphates in wastewater, Biosensors and Bioelectronics, 52 173-179.
- Bajón Fernández Y, Soares A, Villa R, Vale P & Cartmell E (2014) Carbon capture and biogas enhancement by carbon dioxide enrichment of anaerobic digesters treating sewage sludge or food waste, Bioresource Technology, 159 1-7.
- 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.
- Warwick C, Guerreiro A & Soares A (2013) Sensing and analysis of soluble phosphates in environmental samples: a review, Biosensors and Bioelectronics, 41 1-11.
- Paterakis N, Chiu TY, Koh YK, Lester JN, McAdam EJ, Scrimshaw MD, Soares A & Cartmell E (2012) The effectiveness of anaerobic digestion in removing estrogens and nonylphenol ethoxylates, Journal of Hazardous Materials, 199-200 88-95.
- Pratt C, Parsons SA, Soares A & Martin BD (2012) Biologically and chemically mediated adsorption and precipitation of phosphorus from wastewater, Current Opinion in Biotechnology, 23 (6) 890-896.
- Bagnall JP, Ito A, McAdam E, Soares A, Lester JN & Cartmell E (2012) Resource dependent biodegradation of estrogens and the role of ammonia oxidising and heterotrophic bacteria, Journal of Hazardous Materials, 239-240 56-63.
- Martin I, Pidou M, Soares A, Judd S & Jefferson B (2011) Modelling the energy demands of aerobic and anaerobic membrane bioreactors for wastewater treatment, Environmental Technology, 32 (9) 921-932.
- McAdam EJ, Bagnall JP, Soares A, Koh YK, Chiu TY, Scrimshaw MD, Lester JN & Cartmell E (2010) Fate of Alkylphenolic Compounds during Activated Sludge Treatment: Impact of Loading and Organic Composition., Environmental Science and Technology, 45 (1) 248-254.
- Soares A, Kampas P, Maillard S, Wood E, Brigg J, Tillotson M, Parsons SA & Cartmell E (2010) Comparison between disintegrated and fermented sewage sludge for production of a carbon source suitable for biological nutrient removal, Journal of Hazardous Materials, 175 (1-3) 733-739.
- Kampas P, Parsons SA, Pearce P, Ledoux S, Vale P, Cartmell E & Soares AL (2009) An internal carbon source for improving biological nutrient removal, Bioresource Technology, 100 (1) 149-154.
- Lester JN, Soares AL, San Martin D, Harper P, Jefferson B, Brigg J, Wood E & Cartmell E (2009) A novel approach to the anaerobic treatment of municipal wastewater in temperate climates through primary sludge fortification, Environmental Technology, 30 (10) 985-994.
- Koh YKK, Chiu TY, Boobis AR, Scrimshaw MD, Bagnall JP, Soares A, Pollard S, Cartmell E & Lester JN (2009) Influence of Operating Parameters on the Biodegradation of Steroid Estrogens and Nonylphenolic Compounds during Biological Wastewater Treatment Processes, Environmental Science and Technology, 43 (17) 6646-6654.
- Guerreiro ARL, Soares A, Piletska EV, Mattiasson B & Piletsky SA (2008) Preliminary evaluation of new polymer matrix for solid-phase extraction of nonylphenol from water samples, Analytica Chimica Acta, 612 (1) 99-104.
- Soares AL, Guieysse B & Mattiasson B (2006) Influence of agitation on the removal of nonylphenol by the white-rot fungi Trametes versicolor and Bjerkandera sp. BOL 13, Biotechnology Letters, 28 139-143.
- Zilouei H, Soares AL, Guieysse B & Mattiasson B (2006) Influence of temperature on process efficiency and microbial community response during the biological removal of chlorophenols in a packed-bed bioreactor, Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, 72 591-599.
- Soares AL, Murto M, Guieysse B & Mattiasson B (2006) Biodegradation of nonylphenol in a continuous bioreactor at low temperatures and effects on the microbial population, Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, 69 597-606.
- Soares AL, Jonasson K, Trerrazas H, Guieysse B & Mattiasson B (2005) The ability of white-rot fungi to degrade the endocrine disrupting compound nonylphenol, Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, 66 719-725.
- Guieysse B, Autem Y & Soares AL (2005) Biodegradation of phenol at low temperature using two-phase partitioning bioreactors, Water Science and Technology, 52 97-105.
- Soares AL, Guieysse B & Mattiasson B (2003) Biodegradation of nonylphenol in continuous packed-bed bioreactor, Biotechnology Letters, 25 927-933.
- Soares AL, Guieysse B, Delgado O & Mattiasson B (2003) Aerobic biodegradation of nonylphenol by cold-adapted bacteria, Biotechnology Letters, 25 731-738.