Dr.-Ing. E.h. Hans Huber, Prof. Dr.-Ing. Franz Bischof; Mari-Karoliina Henriikka Winkler, Prof. Dr.-Ing. Peter Cornel, Prof. Dr. Peter Wilderer, Dr. Hui Lu, Wolfgang Fochtner, Andreas Eimer, Dr. Christian Barth, and Andreas Vogl after the award handover ceremony
Winner Mari Karoliina Henriikka Winkler takes the glass trophy for first place by Dr. Christian Barth, Head of Section in the Bavarian State Ministry for the Environment and Health
The effects of the climate change are apparent in many places. The availability of water and energy is increasingly becoming the focus of strategies which have great impact on mankind. Even the use of wastewater will be indispensable in the future in many regions of the world: Wastewater will be recycled and reused. Moreover, it will become of growing importance to take into consideration the combination of wastewater & energy if we want to meet the challenges of the future.
This issue therefore was made the subject of this year’s international Huber Technology Prize 2012: Energy from Wastewater. A lot of students from Germany and abroad submitted their ideas, proposals and elaborate project works. It was not easy for the jury to choose the winners from the numerous candidates from Australia, China, Germany, the Netherlands and Great Britain, but finally Prof. Dr. mult. Wilderer, Prof. Dr.-Ing. Cornel, Prof. Bischof and Dr. Brickwedde, general secretary of Deutsche Bundesstiftung Umwelt, made their choice.
In an official ceremony on 8 May at the IFAT 2012 the winners were announced by Dr. Christian Barth, Head of Section in the Bavarian State Ministry for the Environment and Health, and the prizes handed over by CEO Georg Huber. Prof. Dr. Franz Bischof gave a speech in honour of all prize winners.
The first two prizes went to young scientists from the Netherlands and China: German-Finnish Mari-Karoliina Henriikka Winkler won the first prize and EUR 5,000 with her contribution “The Integration of Anammox into the aerobic granular sludge process for mainstream wastewater treatment at ambient temperatures“. Her work deals with the development of an innovative wastewater treatment method which needs much less energy.
She was involved in creating the conditions necessary to adapt this method also to the main wastewater flow to a wastewater treatment plant with normal water temperatures. The 2012 prize winners were the first to receive not only the prize money but with it a nice art piece made of glass and designed as a symbol of “Vision Water” especially for this event by Theodor Sellner, a glass artist from the Bavarian Forest, a region that is well known for its excellent glass art. Mari-Karoliina Henriikka Winkler will soon finish her doctoral dissertation at the Technical University of Delft.
The second prize worth EUR 3,000 went to Dr. Hui Lu for his contribution “An energy saving and sustainable solution to water scarcity and sewage treatment in coastal areas by integration of seawater supply and SANI process”. He did his research work at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology dealing with the development of a method which needs less energy to clean salty wastewater. This new solution, which has already been put into practice on an industrial scale, offers the special feature that it produces much less sewage sludge.
Winners of the third prize and EUR 2,000 are three Master students of the faculty of mechanical and environmental engineering at the University of Applied Sciences Amberg-Weiden. With their contribution “The transmembrane absorption heat exchanger concept”, Andreas Eimer, Wolfgang Fochtner and team leader Andreas Vogl show new ways how to recover both nutrients and heat from wastewater flows.
After the official award ceremony all winners and guests got together at the DWA stand to conclude the evening in an informal atmosphere.