CSIR-NIIST develops sustainable solution for organic wastewater treatment

NIIST has developed a sustainable technology for treating and disposing of organic wastewater produced by hotels, catering units, etc.


Published Feb 28, 2024 | 3:42 PMUpdatedFeb 28, 2024 | 3:42 PM

CSIR-NIIST in Thiruvananthapuram. (Website)

A significant breakthrough has been achieved by the CSIR-National Institute for Interdisciplinary Science and Technology (CSIR-NIIST) in Thiruvananthapuram, which has successfully developed and patented a sustainable technology for treating and disposing of organic wastewater produced by hotels, restaurants, catering units, and similar establishments.

This innovation addresses a critical issue in places lacking adequate sewerage infrastructure.

“As a sustainable solution, the on-site wastewater technology, named NOWA, developed by CSIR-National Institute for Interdisciplinary Science and Technology (CSIR-NIIST), has the advantage of recovering valuable resources like reuse quality water, bio-energy and organic manure and soil conditioner from the wastewater,” an official statement said.

CSIR-NIIST Director C Anandharamakrishnan said that NIIST is looking forward to more start-ups and private companies partnering with it in their highly diverse and interdisciplinary research activities so that the outcome of R&D activities at NIIST can be translated to the field to address real problems of the society.

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About the technology

  • The technology (WO 2022/130402 A1) was developed by a team led by Krishnakumar B, Senior Principal Scientist in the Environmental Technology Division of NIIST, Thiruvananthapuram.
  • It differs from common wastewater treatment technologies like Moving Bed Biofilm Reactor (MBBR), Sequence Bioreactor (SBR), and Electrocoagulation.
  • Advantages include less space requirement, lower operational cost, and the ability to treat high-strength wastewater without frequent sludge disposal.
  • The technology is a combined anaerobic-aerobic bioprocess with attached sludge handling and disinfection modules.
  • 70-80 percent of inlet organic contaminant is recovered as biogas in the anaerobic process unit.
  • Residual organics and nutrients are removed in the subsequent aerobic process unit.
  • The technology will be beneficial for small and medium-scale businesses, reducing wastewater disposal costs.
  • It has been approved by Kerala State Suchitwa Mission, with four companies licensed non-exclusively and field units are operational at various industrial sites.
  • CSIR-NIIST signed an MoU with Kochi-based Two-degree Climate Control Pvt Ltd for the commercial transfer of the technology, marking the fifth technology transfer for NOWA.

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