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Project "EMPYRION": Sustainable elimination of micro-pollutants from municipal wastewater treatment plants using pyrolyzed organic wastes.
Due to the new Swiss federal directive on water quality, more than 100 Swiss wastewater treatment plants need to invest in the elimination of micro pollutants (EMP). Micro-pollutants include hormone-like compounds that can affect both water organisms and drinking water quality. The two most important strategies towards EMP include treatment with ozone and the application of powdered or granulated activated carbon, which will probably create a demand of 2000-8000 t p.a. of activated carbon in the upcoming years. Up to now, there is no production of activated carbon in Switzerland and imports include activated coal, lignite and coconut shell fibers. Their production and transport has considerably effects on the environment.
The goals of our project is to produce and test activated carbons from Swiss wood and organic wastes (including agricultural residues and sewage sludge) at laboratory scale, that have lower environmental impacts than the products now available on the market.