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Autonomous Reed Bed Installations

Type of activity
Competitive project
Funding entity
Commission of European Communities
Funding entity code
503.429,46 €
Start date
End date
http://cordis.europa.eu/project/rcn/109925_en.html Open in new window
http://cordis.europa.eu/projects/606326 Open in new window
Subsurface-flow constructed wetlands have become a very popular cost effective and green technology for treatment of waste water throughout Europe and the rest of the world. Original predictions over the longevity of constructed wetlands were approximately 50 -100 years (Conley et al 1991). However, it has become disappointingly apparent that these systems are clogging and have on average a lifetime of less than 10 years (Griffin et al 2008). Currently when a wetland becomes clogged, the whole site has to be refurbished and the reeds regrown, which takes several years and has significant economic consequences for the operators.

Our project ARBI aims to develop and trial an Autonomous Reed Bed Installation containing a magnetic resonance probe, can be deployed in several locations within a wetland to give measurements at different depths. By measuring the relaxation times of MR, sufficient information can be obtained to determine the clog state of the gravel bed of a wetland. This would enable the operators to isolate those areas of the bed where the problem resides and make a partial intervention, without the need to remove and re-plant the whole reed bed. When the system is developed, we will have potential for application in other water treatment systems based on subsurface flows like: slow rate sand filters, and river bank filtration.

The project will have major benefits for those organisations who would like to install reedbeds but have resisted doing because of concerns over performance and maintenance costs. These will increase the potential size of the market for reedbed installers and benefit the SMEs in the consortium who currently are operating in a constrained market which has not achieved its true potential.
VII Programa Marc de la Unió Europea 2007-2013
Call year
Funcding program
Capacities Specific Programme
Funding subprogram
Research for the benefit of SMEs
Funding call
Research for SMEs
Grant institution
European Commission