Wastewater Remediation

Case Study content

Case Study

Wastewater Remediation using plant-based “Floating Ecosystem (FE) Technology”. BIOMATRIX - an SFC Innovation Voucher involving our Environmental Research Institute.

Maintaining and improving water quality is a global priority, core to our water security. Numerous novel technologies have been developed and applied in recent years with the aim of treating, preserving and improving water quality. One innovative option, termed “Floating Ecosystem (FE) Technology”, not only provides water quality treatment, but also, much wider aesthetic and ecological benefits. Simple to install, FE technology offers a passive floating water treatment system which is cost effective, an attractive aesthetic focal point in a waterscape, and, can support a wide range of biota (i.e., plants, invertebrates, birds, algae).

The Environmental Research Institute is now working in partnership with Biomatrix Water Solutions (Forres), who are pioneers in Scotland in the application and use of FE technology. An SFC Innovation Voucher is being used to initiate a research and innovation programme to help develop new options for FE use in Scotland and beyond. As a first step, ERI and Biomatrix are assessing (at the pilot scale) the efficacy of FE’s to remove excess levels of nutrients (i.e., phosphate and nitrate) and other organic/inorganic pollutants from wastewater. Looking ahead, the team may seek to trial a new portable treatment unit based on FE technology, and, develop modified floating islands which encompass additional low cost granular media (which will act as a sorbent and additional substrate for plant root and biofilm growth). This may in turn help this “natural” plant based technology work even more efficiently. 

For further details regarding ERI's water quality innovation work, please contact Mark.Taggart@uhi.ac.uk or Szabolcs.Pap@uhi.ac.uk.

Floating Ecosystem (FE) technology in action - trial experimental test tanks in Findhorn.

Floating Ecosystem (FE) technology in action - trial experimental test tanks in Findhorn.