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Purifying industrial waste water and utilising the algae biomass

Salt tolerant microalgae are used to purify waste water from the food and dairy industry. A new generation of innovative high-efficiency pumps are deployed in the three demonstration plants within the project. The algae biomass is utilized and further processed to animal feed, platform chemicals, adhesives and biocomposites

Aim and goal

To implement and demonstrate in full scale the long-term technological and economic feasibility of a sustainable, innovative solution for the treatment of high salinity wastewater from the food&dairy industry.


The project is devoted to finding ideal microbial consortia for the purification of wastewaters with different salinities and profiles of organic pollutants, but also to find growth conditions, pond designs and harvesting methods that give optimal purification capacity and yield of spent algae


Halotolerant microalgae can solve the shortcomings of conventional treatments in dealing with this kind of wastewater. The three companies behind the demo plants are important for setting the requirements within the project, but also the companies and research organisations who transform the biomass to valuable chemicals and products. A high level of competence regarding construction, sensor technology, extraction and chemical synthesis is complemented by RISE’s resources for techno-economic evaluations and sustainability assessments.


The food and dairy industry can, in a cost-effective way, purify their wastewaters which is otherwise difficult to handle with conventional purification processes. The biomass of spent microalgae subsequently represent a value which is utlized by transformation to new chemicals and products.



Project name




RISE role in project

WP-leader, responsible for techno-economic and environmental assessments

Project start


3 years

Total budget

8.3 MEUR


Funditec, Biboaqua, Archimede, AlgEn, KOTO, Arava, Dublin City University, Fondazione Parco Tecnologico Padano - PTP, Oxidine, NOVA.ID.FCT, Produmix, EXTRACTIS, INSTM / POLIMI, iBET, EUBIA, ENCO, CLUSTER FOOD+i, European Desalination Society, Officine Meccaniche Sanfilippo


European Commission (Horizon 2020)

Project website


Project members

Supports the UN sustainability goals

6. Clean water and sanitation
9. Industry, innovation and infrastructure
12. Responsible consumption and production