The main purpose of wastewater systems is to protect the health of the population, protect the envi-ronment and to provide welfare for society. Around the world a very high number of large and age-ing wastewater systems can be found nowadays. Many of these systems are located in densely populated city areas, making it impossible or very expensive to carry out major re-design of the sys-tems. Today’s wastewater treatment plants apply real time optimisation of the plants, where as nearly all sewer systems are static, meaning that once the sewer pipes, pumps, basin and overflows have been put in the ground, no further/very little action is taken to optimise the performance of the sewer system in real time.
Wastewater systems stress the aquatic environment and may put the health and safety of people at risk, e.g. when a mixture of rainwater and sewage floods residential areas or is discharged through overflows to receiving waters. Further, the operation of the wastewater systems is under an increas-ing pressure due to: 1.) The EU Water Framework Directive 2.) Increased rainfall and runoff, e.g. due to climate changes 3.) Ageing sewer systems with increased infiltration, exfiltration, structural problems and health risks.
The present project addresses the problem of fragmented operation of the wastewater systems by closing the knowledge gaps within: process understanding; now- and forecasting of the current con-ditions in the wastewater system.
Output from the project will be components for a real-time decision support system following a drop of water from the sky to the recipient. The benefits of such a real-time system are numerous and include improved water quality and reduced health risk, reduced energy consumption and op-eration costs, reduced flooding, increased reliability, and reduced environmental stress.