The International Water Association (IWA) awarded VCS Denmark a Silver Award in the Project Innovation Award category at the World Water Congress & Exhibition 2018 in Tokyo.

VCS Denmark was selected as one of three finalists, and up until the conference, we did not know what our final position would be: Gold, Silver or Bronze. On the first day of the congress, IWA finally spilled the beans and announced, that we would take home a silver award.

We are fiercely proud to receive this award.  The award is an international recognition of our efforts in becoming an energy neutral wastewater treatment plant and netproducer of electricity – and a major pat on the back to all VCS staff involved in the project. IWA has acknowledged VCS Denmark for the Beyond Energy Neutrality project. We launched the project at the beginning of the decade, and in close cooperation with CH2M (now Jacobs).  The project centres on Ejby Mølle water resource recovery facility (WRRF) , where all operational optimisation and energy production was carried out.

VCS Denmarks' CEO Mads Leth receives the Project Innovation Award

Making the most of the resources at hand
Ever since its foundation in the 18th century, Ejby Mølle WRRF has operated in a spirit of innovation. In 2008, this innovative spirit became tangible, when we made the decision to become energy neutral – and with this ventured to challenge the paradigm of major wastewater treatments plants.

To make the challenge even greater, we set out to accomplish our goal by using the existing resources and facilities at hand - with their inherent physical limitations. The project maxim: "use and improve what you have".

With this mindset and with strategic and detailed operational optimisation plus several innovative improvements, we obtained our goal of energy neutrality in 2014. The WRRF was transformed from being a major electrical power consumer to being a net producer of electricity and calorific energy.This feat was achieved with the help of innovations and improvements devised and carried out in close collaboration with the international consultancy company CH2M (now Jacobs).

Key elements in obtaining our goal included

•  An ammonia-based aeration control for biological nutrient removal

•  A nitrous oxide (N2O) probe for continuous measurement of emissions from liquid processes

•  First full-scale granular sidestream deammonification process controlled to minimise N2O emissions while maximising ammonia removal

•  First full-scale application in Scandinavia of induced granulation processes to improve biomass settleability in activated sludge bioreactors

•  First full-scale application in Scandinavia (and third of its kind in the world) of mainstream deammonification as part of a biological nutrient removal system


The production and consumption of energy at Ejby Mølle WRRF meassured in kWh, 2011-2017 
Innovative use of membranes and biofilm
The next step towards sustainable water resource reclamation at Ejby Mølle WRRF is an ambitious, industry-first demonstration programme for an emerging technology, i.e. the membrane aerated biofilm reactor (MABR). Partnering, among others, with the leading MABR manufacturers, SUEZ’s Water Technologies & Solutions, OxyMem, Aarhus Vand and CH2M (now Jacobs), we will be working to develop detailed design and operating information for the MABR over a two-year demonstration and testing period.

MABRs have the potential to revolutionise the way that oxygen is circulated during water reclamation. The innovative use of membranes and biofilm processes optimise the reclamation process, resulting in a minimised physical footprint, energy savings, and reduced GHG emissions.

Follow VCS Denmark at the IWA World Water Congress 2018 on LInkedIN. We will post regular updates from the conference on our LinkedIN company page:

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