Trial at Bo’ness facility ‘could transform’ waste water treatment globally

Bo'ness Waste Water Treatment Works is trialling MicroNiche Engineering (MNE) technology
Bo'ness Waste Water Treatment Works is trialling MicroNiche Engineering (MNE) technology

A Falkirk district facility has been chosen as the site for testing which could revolutionise the way the world’s waste water is processed.

New MicroNiche Engineering (MNE) technology developed in the US is being trialled for six months by experts at Scottish Water’s Waste Water Development Centre in Bo’ness.

Using specific bacteria which eat pollutants in the excess water, MNE creates an environment for these bacteria, known as biocatalysts, to make them work more efficiently.

The technology is designed to intensify the population of the bacteria and speed up the rate at which the good bacteria out-compete the bad bacteria.

The trial in Bo’ness will test the limits and conditions in which the biocatalysts can operate and determine if this technique has the potential to transform how waste water is treated.

The test centre, the only facility of its kind in the UK, is based next to Bo’ness Waste Water Treatment Works and enables the testing of new processes, technologies and equipment under live conditions in a safe and operational scale environment.

George Ponton, head of research and innovation at Scottish Water, said: “We are excited to see the outcome of the trials of this potentially innovative waste water process.

“If this process works it would transform the way waste water is treated. To meet the future demand of an ever-growing population it is essential that we find ways to increase the capacity and efficiency of our existing assets.”