Water and wastewater systems engineering

Traditional water and wastewater systems are built using one pipe infrastructure for the supply of clean water, and one pipe infrastructure for transporting wastewater. The deparment's experts believe that future developments in city planning will adopt decentralized solutions — that new development schemes will increasingly attempt to achieve self sustaining supplies of fresh water. This will be achieved through extensive treatment and recycling of used water.

Current research activities regard the following topics.

Urban hydrology and storm water management

With the increasing trend towards urbanization, management of surface water runoff in urban areas is an important challenge. The research group has focused on challenges related to urban hydrology in cold climate regions. A major achievement is the establishment of the Risvollan Urban Hydrological Field Laboratory, Risvollan (20 ha) in Trondheim. This long-term activity is the basis for the ongoing comprehensive research on urban runoff in cold climate. Research activities are directed towards developing mathematical models and processes to prevent flooding and pollution of the environment.

Pipe management systems

In the area of water and wastewater systems, the major achievement of the group is the development of methods for computer aided rehabilitation of sewer and storm water networks through the EU-projects CARE W, CARE S and City Net. Rehabilitation issues are complex and an attempt to resolve them in a realistic and scientific way requires tapping into advanced tools that are already common in other industries. See also The European Water Technology Platform.

Industrial applications

The research group is also involved in water quality issues in specific industrial applications. These include developing novel systems for wastewater treatment on ships, treatment of produced water during the extraction of oil and gas in the North Sea, and the development of advanced water recycling systems used in aquaculture. Due to the global dimension of water and wastewater issues, the group has a strong international portfolio and contact network. The group is heavily involved in research projects within the EU Research Framework, both as a project partner and in various coordinating roles. Through several bilateral research programs members of the group are involved in all regions of the world. This international dimension is mirrored in that the research group is comprised of members representing between 10–12 different nationalities, giving a unique and inspiring perspective within the ongoing research activities.

Related studies

The large part of the research at the deparment is conducted in tandem with master and Ph.D. projects.

Water and wastewater engineering