Department Urban Water Management

Urban Water Management

Research in this department aims at the urban water system as an entity and at developing the corresponding ecological, economical and social services into a sustainable future. In addition to traditional questions concerning urban hygiene and water pollution control, the sustainable use and management of the resources is a primary concern. Read more

Urban Water Observatory

The Urban Water Observatory (UWO) is a long-term initiative of ETH and Eawag to establish a sensor network in Fehraltorf, allowing spatially-distributed monitoring of urban water cycle processes.  Read more


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March 14, 2019

Consumption of cocaine, ecstasy, amphetamines and methamphetamines is increasing all over Europe according to the latest findings of the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA). In Swiss cities, the consumption of cocaine and ecstasy certainly appear to have remained at a high level. Read more

March 11, 2019

It’s no secret that urine contains valuable nutrients – or that diluting them with water which is then flushed into sewers is not the most sustainable way of managing this resource. But how can urine be kept out of wastewater? Eawag has been investigating this question for many years, and one answer is to use a urine-diverting toilet to separate it “at source”. What may sound simple turned out in practice to be a tricky task, and several generations of toilets were needed to optimise the source separation technology to the point where it can be more widely deployed.  Read more


Penn, R.; Maurer, M.; Michalec, F.-G.; Scheidegger, A.; Zhou, J.; Holzner, M. (2019) Quantifying physical disintegration of faeces in sewers: stochastic model and flow reactor experiments, Water Research, 152, 159-170, doi:10.1016/j.watres.2018.12.037, Institutional Repository
Mutzner, L.; Vermeirssen, E. L. M.; Ort, C. (2019) Passive samplers in sewers and rivers with highly fluctuating micropollutant concentrations – Better than we thought, Journal of Hazardous Materials, 361, 312-320, doi:10.1016/j.jhazmat.2018.07.040, Institutional Repository
Manny, L.; Fischer, M.; Staufer, P.; Rieckermann, J. (2019) Saubere Gewässer dank Messdatenmanagement. Instrumente für einen guten Umgang mit Messdaten in der Schweizer Siedlungsentwässerung, Aqua & Gas, 99(1), 58-65, Institutional Repository
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Research Projects

Goal is an improved planning procedure for sustainable water supply and wastewater infrastructure management that links into the existing Swiss governance structures.
An inter- and transdisciplinary strategic research program that strives to develop novel non-gridconnected water and sani- tation systems that can function as comparable alternatives to network-based systems.
Advancing estimation of illicit drug use from wastewater samples - the role of in-sewer drug transformation.
Kanalnetzbewirtschaftung für besseren Gewässerschutz