Low-carbon Footprint Material Recovery Techniques (SMART-Plant)

Scale-up of low-carbon footprint material recovery techniques in existing wastewater treatment plants

In the scope of the SMART-Plant project current approaches for materials recovery techniques are tested on an industrial scale at existing WWTPs. The aim is to develop energy- and eco-efficient value cycle solutions with regard to different materials. At five WWTPs seven pilot systems including two post treatment schemes are being optimised over a period of >2 years and tested under real conditions.

The recovered products comprise biopolymers, cellulose, plant nutrients, fertilisers and semi-finished products which will be recycled into commercially usable end products.

The project will demonstrate the feasibility of recycling different materials originating from domestic wastewater and assess the environmental and economic benefits by LCA. A market study and the development of novel operating schemes will consolidate the partnership between the wastewater sector and chemical industries and consequently stimulate the implementation of the relevant techniques.


Selected publications produced in the SMART-Plant project are available here.



© Header Foto: BWA B.V.

Project partners



Press and Media

  • Die Europäische Kommission will das Prinzip der „Kreislaufwirtschaft“ auf möglichst viele Wirtschaftsbereiche übertragen. Damit soll der Ressourcenverbrauch und die Nutzung endlicher Rohstoffe minimiert und so der Umwelt- und Klimafußabdruck in Europa verringert werden.

More information

  • Improving the carbon footprint of sewage treatment plants through resource recycling!

    Stakeholder-Workshop on 29 Januar 2020 in Berlin to Present Results from European Joint Project SMART-Plant.

    The European Commission wants…

  • Wastewater as a Resource

    “Everything supposed to be green is dried up and brown!” – The astronaut Alexander Gerst was shocked when he saw the drought in Germany in summer 2018.…

  • Recovery of cellulose and biopolymer from wastewater

    Pilot plant in EU project SMART-Plant just started

    Municipal wastewater contains valuable substances such as organic matter, nutrients, and…