New professor of practice to promote circular economy in wastewater treatment
The five-year position is funded through donations. Principal donors include the Helsinki Region Environmental Services Authority HSY, Maa- ja vesitekniikan tuki ry, the Finnish Water Utilities Association (FIWA) and several water utilities from different parts of Finland.
The aim of the new professor of practice is to comprehensively reinforce research and development in the field of wastewater engineering and to promote new research-based businesses. New avenues for research and development are sought by identifying practical needs in co-operation with water utilities and companies.
’Wastewater disposal is undergoing a transformation, with treatment facilities turning into multifunctional resource factories. Resources such as energy and nutrients used for manufacturing fertiliser can be collected from wastewater – in addition to clean water,’ says Anna Mikola.
The key research areas of the position include the reduction of the carbon footprint related to the wastewater treatment process and increasing the effectiveness of resource recovery. In addition, Mikola’s research covers the removal of emerging contaminants – such as microplastics and pharmaceutical residues – and the development of low-temperature wastewater treatment processes.
Mikola’s aim is to promote the implementation of innovations and new technologies developed at Aalto University as well as to give a boost to new businesses springing from research.
Anna Mikola graduated as Master of Science (Technology) from Helsinki University of Technology in 1998 and completed her doctorate in water and environmental engineering at Aalto University in 2013. She has worked as a part-time post-doctoral researcher at Aalto University, studying urban wastewater. Mikola also has over 15 years of experience as a treatment process consultant at Kiuru&Rautiainen and at Ramboll Finland.
The new position is with the Aalto University’s Water and Environmental Engineering Research Group, which is part of the Department of Built Environment at the School of Engineering.
Professor of Practice (technologies for municipal wastewater treatment)
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