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Applied Environmental Technology in Thonotosassa, FL awarded More than $79,000 for Energy and Nutrient Extraction from Onsite Wastewater

Release Date: 06/13/2013
Contact Information: Contact: William McBride, 404-562-8378 (direct), 404-562-8400 (main),

Atlanta – Applied Environmental Technology (AET), in Thonotosassa, Fl. has been awarded more than $79,000 from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program to develop low cost energy and nutrient extraction from onsite wastewater.

Onsite wastewater systems are a significant source of nutrient loading to the environment and there is a demand for technologies that remove nutrients at the source. Most desired are passive, low-cost systems that can consistently remove 90 percent or greater nitrogen while having low energy input and easy operation. While numerous proprietary devices have been developed that typically employ multiple mechanical apparatus, they require active attention and provide only partial nitrogen removal. AET is developing a unique multi-chamber treatment process that provides high percent nitrogen removal, passive operation, low life cycle cost, and resilient performance. The AET process applies anaerobic biological treatment in a multi-chamber upflow solids blanket bioreactor to remove organics and recover energy, followed by a selectively configured ion adsorption, aerobic and anaerobic biofilter that employs judiciously specified designer media. No operation energy is required. Nitrogen and phosphorus reductions exceeding 95 percent have been achieved with initially configured components, suggesting that a viable commercial system can be developed. The objective of SBIR Phase 1 is to experimentally validate two prototype designs and provide a scale-up basis for Phase 2 evaluation of full-scale systems.

EPA’s Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program funds innovative research resulting in new commercial products, processes and services that protect the environment, benefit the public, and promote the growth of small businesses. This year’s projects focus on drinking water, wastewater, manufacturing, green building, waste monitoring and management, air quality, sustainable use of biomass and homeland security.

Nationally, SBIR awarded more than $2 million to 25 small businesses nationwide to develop new environmental technologies that will help protect people’s health and the environment. Each of the 25 companies will receive an SBIR Phase I contract of up to $80,000 to further develop their technology over the next six months. Once the project has been demonstrated to be commercially viable, then companies are eligible to compete for a Phase II award of up to $300,000 to commercialize their technology. To be eligible to participate in the SBIR program, a company must be an organized for-profit U.S. business, and have fewer than 500 employees.

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