As part of a consortium, £1M funding from the UK Department of Trade and Industry and £2M from the European Union has been awarded, enabling Water Innovate, a spin-put company from the highly internationally respected Centre for Water Science at Cranfield University, to implement technological solutions to significantly reduce the chemical oxygen demand (COD) in recalcitrant liquid wastes generated by industry.
These recalcitrant liquid wastes are currently removed from sites by tanker for subsequent specialised treatment by contractors. In the UK, approximately 400,000 tonnes of metal working fluid (MWF) waste requires removal from site at a high, and rising, cost (£100/tonne).
Prof. Tom Stephenson, Technical Director at Water innovate, says “These costs are a competitive constraint on UK businesses. Tighter environmental legislation means even more waste treatment will be required further increasing costs. MCR technology will treat recalcitrant waste and reduce the costs of waste disposal, permitting disposal of a higher proportion of industrial waste to sewer.”
MCR reduces the COD of liquid recalcitrant waste, typically >200 000 mg/l, to <1000 mg/l on-site, a level at which effluent disposal to sewer is feasible. Tom Stephenson continues, “MCR technology has successfully treated organic recalcitrant wastes including MWF, pharmaceutical wastes landfill leachate and grey water.” This technology will provide a way for businesses to reduce costs and their environmental impact.
Water Innovate develops new technologies for a range of environmental applications. Its key strengths reside, in part, with excellent access to technological partners through links such as Water Innovate Technical Director, Professor Tom Stephenson, has with the Centre for Water Science at Cranfield University.
John Catling, Executive Chairman at Water Innovate, explains that the aim of the company is “to bridge the research-to-business innovation gap; Water Innovate identifies new technological solutions for the water and environmental industries and exploits routes to market for these solutions”.
These latest developments in MCR technology build upon existing technological innovations from Water Innovate. Other recent ground-breaking developments include:
- N-Tox®, an on-line real-time nitrous oxide monitor for early-warning alerts of nitrification failure at wastewater treatment plants, and measurement of the potent greenhouse gas;
- ODOURsim®, a dynamic temporal and spatial odour emission software model for wastewater treatment systems;
- ZR-Coag®, a product that enables the high efficiency coagulation of potable supplies and waste treatment effluents.