DEMON developer announces US development partnership

  • Research


The University of Innsbruck, developer and patent holder for the DEMON wastewater nitrogen removal technology, has announced a partnership with utility DC Water in the USA to jointly refine and market the system.

The DEMON deammonification system was patented by the university 11 years ago and is now in use in around 70 wastewater treatment plants. The world’s largest installation is currently under construction at DC Water’s Blue Plains plant in Washington, DC.

The technology uses a biological process for removing ammonium. ‘We successfully implemented the first system in a wastewater treatment plant in Strass, in the Zillertal valley in Austria,’ comments co-developer Bernhard Wett. ‘This treatment plant is the first energy self-sufficient wastewater treatment plant globally. Therefore, it can be considered as a prototype of our system, which has attracted interest around the world.’ The Strass plant now features use a drum screen to enrich the presence of granular anammox bacteria to provide treatment in the continuous deammonification (conDEA) variant of the technology.

According to the university, systems similar to the Blue Plains installation are either being planned or built for Singapore, Stockholm, Yokohama and Jerusalem.a

‘The development and marketing of the patent has been a huge success story for the University of Innsbruck,’ comments Tilmann Märk, Rector of the university. ‘With this newly established US-cooperation, it is possible to further refine the technology, which will guarantee its success in the future.’

In northern Europe, the DEMON-system has been implemented by long-time license holder Sweco, formerly Grontmij, and this partnership is going to be extended with a new contract.


  • water and energy, wastewater treatment, nitrogen