Drinking Water

Prevention is better than cure

Thanks to the fact that Switzerland’s surface waters have been kept clean, this maxim has to a large extent been upheld. However, the presence of new (harmful) substances allows no room for complacency on this front. Globally, there is an urgent need for cost-effective and energy-efficient water treatment solutions on various scales - all the way through to wastewater recycling.


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April 16, 2018

What is the contribution of upstream areas to micropollutant loads in the Rhine at Basel and Düsseldorf? How effectively do authorities and water suppliers collaborate on management and regulation across national boundaries? An interdisciplinary approach developed by Eawag scientists can help to identify deficiencies. Read more

April 10, 2018

Faced with polluted river water, rural communities or aid agencies often drill groundwater wells to obtain water supplies. But data collected systematically for the first time in the Amazon basin show that this “solution” can create new problems: the groundwater may contain elevated concentrations of arsenic, manganese and aluminium – up to 70 times over the recommended limit in the case of arsenic, and up to 15 times for manganese. Read more


Scientific publications

Desmond, P.; Best, J. P.; Morgenroth, E.; Derlon, N. (2018) Linking composition of extracellular polymeric substances (EPS) to the physical structure and hydraulic resistance of membrane biofilms, Water Research, 132, 211-221, doi:10.1016/j.watres.2017.12.058, Institutional Repository
Proctor, C. R.; Reimann, M.; Vriens, B.; Hammes, F. (2018) Biofilms in shower hoses, Water Research, 131, 274-286, doi:10.1016/j.watres.2017.12.027, Institutional Repository
Szekeres, G. P.; Németh, Z.; Schrantz, K.; Németh, K.; Schabikowski, M.; Traber, J.; Pronk, W.; Hernádi, K.; Graule, T. (2018) Copper-coated cellulose-based water filters for virus retention, ACS Omega, 3(1), 446-454, doi:10.1021/acsomega.7b01496, Institutional Repository
Wolf, C.; von Gunten, U.; Kohn, T. (2018) Kinetics of inactivation of waterborne enteric viruses by ozone, Environmental Science and Technology, 52(4), 2170-2177, doi:10.1021/acs.est.7b05111, Institutional Repository
To the library
Lanz, K.; Rahn, E.; Siber, R.; Stamm, C. (2014) Bewirtschaftung der Wasserressourcen unter steigendem Nutzungsdruck, 84 p, Institutional Repository
Hoffmann, S.; Hunkeler, D.; Maurer, M. (2014) Nachhaltige Wasserversorgung und Abwasserentsorgung in der Schweiz. Herausforderungen und Handlungsoptionen. Thematische Synthese 3 im Rahmen des Nationalen Forschungsprogramms NFP 61 «Nachhaltige Wassernutzung», 83 p, Institutional Repository

Selected research projects and programs

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.


Prof. Dr. Janet Hering
  • biogeochemistry
  • sustainable water management
  • water treatment
  • water quality
Dr. Stephan Hug
  • arsenic
  • solid-water interfaces
  • groundwater
  • spectroscopic methods
Prof. Dr. Rolf Kipfer
  • noble gases
  • isotopes
Dr. Wouter Pronk
  • drinking water
  • water treatment
Prof. Dr. Mario Schirmer
  • groundwater
  • hydrogeology
  • modeling
  • surface water
Prof. Dr. Urs Von Gunten
  • advanced oxidation processes
  • ozonation
  • drinking water
  • water treatment
Prof. Dr. Lenny Winkel
  • inorganic contaminants
  • arsenic
  • groundwater
  • organic pollutants
  • sediments
  • selenium