Eawag has a long history of developing innovative processes for separating wastewater at source. These technologies include one whereby urine is separated out using the NoMix Toilet, a project which numerous Eawag researchers have been working on for many years.
The NoMix principle is quite simple: The toilet separates urine and faeces so that urine can be collected separately from the rest of the wastewater. Thanks to a recycling process developed at Eawag, the urine collected in-house is converted into a high-grade fertiliser. Nutrients can thus be recovered from urine, which means that fertilisers do not have to be produced artificially. The use of urine as a fertiliser also takes the burden off the wastewater treatment facility, where nitrogen and traces of pharmaceuticals have to be removed from urine in a highly energy-intensive process. The NoMix technology therefore promotes the protection of natural waters at the same time as saving resources.
Vuna as an Eawag-spin-off
The Vuna GmbH spin-off was established on the back of the former Vuna project at Eawag, commercialising the technology that was developed in the project.
Blue Diversion Toilet
As part of the Reinvent the Toilet Challenge this NoMix Toilet was developed for the purposes of resource recovery. The next generation of this emerged in the form of the Autarky Toilet, with resource recovery in the toilet itself.