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Innovation

Advanced Septic System Nitrogen Sensor Challenge Phase II: Prototype Testing

EPA selected Battelle Memorial Institute (Battelle) to support the Prototype Testing Program by developing a Test/Quality Assurance Plan (T/QAP) and Verification Plan and overseeing the testing of the sensors. The T/QAP is based on the International Organization for Standardization Environmental Technology Verification (ETV) Standard - ISO 14034. Funding for the testing program is from the US EPA Office of Research and Development and the Office of Water/Wastewater Management.The Challenge

Sensor testing will be conducted at the Massachusetts Alternative Septic System Test Center (MASSTC), a National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) certified test facility in Barnstable, Massachusetts in 2018-19. Under the new schedule, sensor developers will have the opportunity to test their sensor twice during the one-month tests, which will be held in October 2018 and January 2019. Each one-month test will include the one-week screening test during the first 7 days.

Developers whose sensors are judged to be capable of meeting minimum performance goals based on their one-week screening results will be invited to participate in an extensive 6-month field performance test. Battelle will verify the results of the field performance tests based on the VerifiGlobal Performance Verification Protocol and the requirements of the ISO 14034 ETV standard.

Informational Webinar 

An informational webinar was held on Monday, July 16, 2018. The Challenge is open to all who wish to enter! 

Challenge.gov Page

Visit the Challenge.gov posting here.

Timeline for Phase II

  • July 16, 2018 – Webinar on the T/QAP, the testing process and the application
  • August 31, 2018 – Deadline for submission of testing applications for the October 2018 one-month test.  http://www.verifiglobal.com/en/advanced-septic-system-nitrogen-sensor-challenge-pretesting  Instructions to submit can be found on the cover page of the application.
  • October 1, 2018 – One-month test at MASSTC
  • December 7, 2018 - Deadline for submission of testing applications for the January 2019 one-month test. http://www.verifiglobal.com/en/advanced-septic-system-nitrogen-sensor-challenge-pretesting  Instructions to submit can be found on the cover page of the application. 
  • January 7, 2019 - One-month test at MASSTC
  • Mid-May – Mid-November 2019 – Six-month field performance testing at MASSTC for the selected sensors
  • Late February 2020 – ISO ETV 14034 verification reports and statements completed

Sensor Performance Goals

Prize: Verification Report and 2019 Market Stimulation Opportunity

Following the release of the verification reports in early 2019, an external technical panel and The Nature Conservancy (TNC) will review the results. TNC and others are seeking funding for an order of 200 units, not to exceed a total cost of $300,000. The order would be presented in the summer of 2019 to the best performing sensor/s that completes the 6-month field performance test and meets or exceeds the performance goals.