Every research challenge opens up a range of solutions and the criteria for selecting the optimal one are deeply rooted in iMETland’s rationale: learning from nature how to restore water purity for small communities, through the combination of innovative technologies preserving nature and treating urban wastewater at zero energy cost. This holds particularly true when innovation is driven by the need to benefit the local environment and serve small communities worldwide. The iMETland wastewater device is currently at the mid-point of its development, showing early technical achievements in the Spanish unit and overcoming regulatory constraints in Denmark. In late 2016, iMETland innovation partners gathered at Aarhus University in Denmark to share early successes and to discuss ways of overcoming the challenges encountered in the research and construction activities. Among the success factors are undoubtedly the results obtained by the demonstration activities related to the Spanish unit. These are enabling the partners to gather research data and insights about the paramount role of microbial communities and the benefits they bring in their relation to electroconductive materials. One of the first challenges to emerge was the technical and regulatory environments of the localities involved. To overcome this, the team focused on how to design a device that could be applied to all units and able to collect data directly from them. The innovation partners left Denmark with the renewed conviction that iMETland’s innovation will be grounded on their research findings and solutions in line with the project’s mission to restore water purity in local communities using natural processes.
water, technology, waste water, sustainability