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Development of a solar distillation wastewater treatment plant for olive oil mills

Objective

Scientific objectives and approach:

The main objective of the SOLARDIST project is the treatment of the liquid waste generated in small olive oil mills, many of them with no economically adequate treatment system, by means of a combination of a solar distillation process and constructed wetlands. In addition to this, the organic solid waste generated during the process of the olive oil, is proposed to be composted in order to provide an environmental friendly solution to this residue.

Problems to be solved:

Europe is the most important producer of olives in the world. A significant part of the olives harvested are processed to produce olive oil in several thousand of mills. These producers are mainly placed in the basin of the Mediterranean Sea (Greece, Italy, Spain, and other countries), and all of them with the common trouble of the wastewater generated in the process. Many of them are small and medium sized enterprises, without enough economical resources to afford expensive solutions for the problem of this wastewater. It is necessary to join forces and resources from all of them in order to find an economical and easy solution.
Besides, a solid residue is produced within the olive oil production, which usually is burned or deposited in olive farms.

Expected Impacts:

The project SOLARDIST will have several positive impacts once it is conclude. On the one hand, the establishment of a solar distillation wastewater treatment system for SMEs olive mills in combination with a biological treatment like constructed wetlands would allow to eliminate the 98 % of its organic matter content, including phenols and polyphenolic compounds. As well as this, the reduction of the air pollution and odour generated from uncontrolled evaporation pools, due to the installation of the solar distillation. The SOLARDIST system will be an easy-to-handle, almost maintenance-free and practically process cost-free wastewater treatment system for olive oil mills. The system will allow composting the organic solid waste generated at the same time in the olive oil facilities.
On the other hand, from a social point of view, the SOLARDIST project considers the use of the sun as a renewable energy source for the treatment of olive oil wastewater. The cooperation between different sectors as olive oil producers, compost producers, water technology companies and renewable energy sector will be enhanced. Finally, no professional staff will be needed to operate the system, and moreover, SOLARDIST supports the independence of the olive oil mills and employment in the olive oil industry.

Funding Scheme

CRS - Cooperative research contracts

Coordinator

IB ALTERNATIVE TECHNOLOGIEN
Address
Volmerstrasse 5
12489 Berlin
Germany

Participants (9)

ARGUS UMWELTBIOTECHNOLOGIE GMBH
Germany
Address
Kitzingstrasse 11-13
Berlin
GLOBE WATER AB
Sweden
Address

100 55 Stockholm
ILIAKO REWMA AGRIOGIANNES MICHALIS
Greece
Address
Leoforos Knossou 7
71306 Iraklion
MILLENIUM ELECTRIC T.O.U. INC.
Israel
Address
Hasadna Street 7
43650 Ra'anna
STAB AMBIENTE, CONCEPCAO, CONSTRUCAO E EXPLORACAO DE SISTEMAS AMBIENTAIS
Portugal
Address
Centro Empresarial Sintra-estoril V. E29, Capa Rot
2710-090 Sintra
TERSAN PUGLIA E SUD ITALIA
Italy
Address
S.s. 98 Km 79+700
70026 Modugno
UNION OF AGRICULTURAL COOPERATIVES OF PEZA
Greece
Address
Kalloni
70 100 Eraklion-crete
UNIVERSITA DEGLI STUDI DI BARI
Italy
Address
Via Amendola 165A
70126 Bari
VEREIN ZUR FOERDERUNG DES TECHNOLOGIETRANSFERS AN DER HOCHSCHULE BREMERHAVEN E.V.
Germany
Address
An Der Karlstadt 6
27568 Bremerhaven