WATSON: our new project on decision support systems applied to drinking water treatment

Funded by the Spanish Ministry of Competitiveness, the project has been initiated in January 2018 and will have duration of 3 years


The final phase includes the full validation of the technology in a drinking water treatment plan in Catalonia


The human right to water has been recognised by the United Nations and is one of the most essential public services. Water supplied to citizens should be sufficient, physically accesible, safe for human health, with acceptable organoleptic properties and affordable.  


Reaching these objectives is not as simple as it may seem. It depends on a high number of physical and chemical parameters of water such as turbidity, natural organic matter, certain microbiological agents, odour-causing compounds and anthropogenic organic compounds; parameters that in one or other way are affected by stationarity and river basin. This converts the drinking water treatment plants into a very complex system that need to adapt to the ever changing properties of water inlet.


Project WATSON (WATer treatment workS OperatioN/OptimizatioN) aims at addressing this variability and advancing toward a more resilient, robust and reliable operation of drinking water treatment plants. The technology selected is environmental decision support systems (EDSS), one of the main LEQUIA research lines o to study urban water cycle.


WATSON work plan is composed of three phases: 1) characterisation of natural organic matter through different analytical and online monitoring techniques and tools, 2) modelling of unit operations that integrate drinking water treatment plants and 3) development and validation of a decision support system (DSS) that integrates the different knowledges and expertises that affect the management of these facilities. The process includes experiments at lab scale, analysis of operation data from drinking water treatment plants and full scale validation of the DSS. Moreover, scenarios with different weather conditions and stationarity will be evaluated.


Initiated in January 2018, the project has duration of 3 years and is funded by programme “Retos de Investigación” of the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness. The principal investigator, Dr Maria Martín, will coordinate a multidisciplinary research team within the chemical engineering, environmental sciences and computer sciences fields. Members of the team are other professors from UdG Faculty of Sciences and Polytechnic School (Dr Manel Poch, Dr Marta Verdaguer and Dr Narcís Clara) and postdoctoral (Dr Hèctor Monclús) and predoctoral (Lluís Godo, Èric Santos and Jordi Suquet) researchers.  

Additional Info

  • Date: 2017-1-25

Search news



Laboratory of Chemical and Enviromental Engineering

Institut de Medi Ambient
Universitat de Girona
Campus Montilivi
17003 Girona

Parc Científic i Tecnològic de la UdG
Edifici Jaume Casademont, Porta B
Pic de Peguera, 15
17003 Girona
Tel. +34 972 41 98 59




Social Media

Follow us on ...

Facebook Twitter Youtube Linkedin

NOTE! This site uses cookies and similar technologies. If you not change browser settings, you agree to it. Cookie Policy