The future of Nature-based solutions?
Hybrid Microbial Electrochemical Technology Constructed Wetlands (CW) are a novel approach for the development of CW technology based on microbial fuel cell (MFC) principles. MFCs are bioelectrochemical systems which use microorganism to oxidize organic and inorganic matter and convert their chemical energy into electric energy. The use of electroconductive wetland material (instead of sand/gravel) results in what can be referred to as “hybrid microbial electrochemical constructed wetlands (HyMETland)”. Based on reported studies, microbial electrochemical-constructed wetlands represent a powerful hybrid technology that can outperform conventional CWs. However, is still a technology under development and, therefore, several uncertainties exist.
The HyMETland project is the first in this topic in Finland!
Project main objectives are:
Identify characteristics of biomass based electric conductive materials that promote electrochemical processes
Identify microbial-driven processes involved in organic matter oxidation and N cycling in bioelectrochemical systems
Evaluate the greenhouse gases emissions potential of these systems (not reported so far)
Uncover the potential of METland type of systems as nature-based solutions for the treatment of different wastewater sources in cold climate regions
Project founder, coordinator, and collaborators
The project has been funded by Maa- ja Vesitekniikantuki ry and Kvantum Institute, University of Oulu via the "Emerging Projects" program. Docent Elisangela Heiderscheidt from the Water, Energy and Environmental Engineering research unit, University of Oulu, is the project coordinator.
Project collaborators include:
NMR research unit at the university of Oulu,
Dr. Carlos Alberto Arias , Centre for Water Technology (WATEC), Arhus University, Arhus, DK.
Christopher Carstens, CEO of Carbon Culture, Helsinki, FI,
Academy Research Fellow, Docent Katharina Kujala, Water, Energy and Environmental Engineering research unit, University of Oulu, FI.
Implementation and timetable
The project will run for a total of 6 years (2021- 2026). Researcher tasks have been allocated into 2 different work Packages (WPs)
- WP1 – Systems performance and material suitability
- WP2 – HyMETland vs constructed wetland: systems functioning and process understanding