Economic recovery and reuse of nutrients from wastewater

EPA Contract Number: EPD18007
Title: Economic recovery and reuse of nutrients from wastewater
Investigators: Kadossov, Evgueni
Small Business: XploSafe, LLC
EPA Contact: Nolt-Helms, Cynthia
Phase: II
Project Period: February 1, 2018 through January 31, 2020
Project Amount: $300,000
RFA: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) - Phase II (2017) 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 negative health and ecological effects. During Phase I XploSafe successfully confirmed the technical feasibility of using its proprietary low-cost biodegradable sorbents to passively adsorb target nutrient ions (ammonium, nitrate, urea, and phosphate) from primary and secondary wastewater. The treated sorbents were subsequently applied as a slow-release fertilizer to effectively grow rhizomes thus demonstrating the recovery and reuse of essential plant nutrients. Phase II efforts will be focused on technology scale up and operational demonstration of the technology with a municipal wastewater treatment facility. Wastewater treatment plants (14,780 in the U.S.), animal farming operations (257,201) and organic farms (18,153) represent some customers and users of the developed technology. The technology will prevent eutrophication of natural waters and lower dependence on manufactured fertilizer through recycling. It also has a sustainable cost and utility advantage over industry standard biological and chemical treatment solutions that cannot offer nutrient reuse. In addition to helping wastewater treatment plants reach compliance, the technology also represents a strong value proposition for wastewater plant operators by generation of revenue from the sale of nutrient rich fertilizer.

SBIR Phase I:

Economic recovery and reuse of nutrients from wastewater  | Final Report