Economic recovery and reuse of nutrients from wastewater

EPA Contract Number: EPD17009
Title: Economic recovery and reuse of nutrients from wastewater
Investigators: Kadossov, Evgueni
Small Business: XploSafe, LLC
EPA Contact: Richards, April
Phase: I
Project Period: November 1, 2016 through April 30, 2017
Project Amount: $100,000
RFA: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) - Phase I (2016) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) , SBIR - Water


Nutrient pollution caused by excess nitrogen and phosphorus in the water is a costly and challenging environmental problem with widespread potential for negative health and ecological effects. The proposed solution to this problem is the capture of ammonium, urea, nitrate and phosphate on low-cost biodegradable sorbent pellets that upon saturation, with the nutrients can be employed directly as slow-release fertilizer that adds both minerals and key nutrients to the soil. The proposed technology will prevent eutrophication of natural waters and lower dependence on manufactured fertilizer through recycling. The replacement of high-energy oxidation processes with a low-energy and cost sorption process can lead to economic and environmental benefits. It will also have similar energy and economic and energy advantages over other wastewater to fertilizer technologies such as struvite precipitation or production of heat-dried microbial matter. XploSafe estimates the United States market potential at 491 tons per year and growing at rate of 7% over the next 5 years. At an average retail price of $10.25/ kg the United States annual market potential is estimated at $50.3 million. Wastewater treatment plants will also be able to generate added revenue streams from the sale/use of the spent sorbent as a slow release fertilizer.

Progress and Final Reports:

  • Final Report
  • SBIR Phase II:

    Economic recovery and reuse of nutrients from wastewater