The main objective of the ARES project is to understand the integrated behaviour of selected contaminants of emerging concern (CECs), comprising organic micropollutants (antibiotics), antibiotic resistant genes (ARGs) and pathogens (bacteria and viruses), using an innovative treatment scheme for segregated treatment of domestic wastewater separated in two fractions (Black and Grey Water) or the sludge purged from Septic Tanks.
In the first part of the project treatment will be carried out at laboratory scale, using a first anaerobic methanogenic reactor for the removal of organic matter and a second anoxic/aerobic stage for nitrogen removal. The effluent of this biological systems will be treated using tertiary membrane filtration. The main aim of this part of the work is to analyse, under controlled conditions, CEC removals in the different units as well as to understand in more detail the interrelationships between the operating conditions and the obtained results. For this purpose, the removal of antibiotics, the microbial population, the evolution of pathogens and of selected ARGs will be regularly assessed. The results of this stage will be further validated at pilot scale in a real environment.