WATSprof project will conduct a TRL8 proof of concept of new digital solutions for drinking water treatment plants (DWTPs). An Environmental Decision Support System (DrinkIA_EDSS) will be upgraded and validated in three real DWTPs in Catalonia. Furthermore, two different commercialisation roadmaps (spinoff creation vs technology licensing) will be explored, and one of them deployed to enter the developed technology in the market.
To reach this ultimate goal, both scientific/technological and exploitation activities will be carried. IPR issues will be addressed by means of trademark registration, NDA/technology transfer agreements, and a patentability study. To produce a comprehensive business plan, the research team will participate in entrepreneurship training/mentoring programmes and a market assessment analysis will be commissioned to a specialised consultancy. As for the dissemination plan, it will mainly focus on building up a strong network of potential investors/clients/partners within the water sector by means of participating in business conference/fairs. This will have relevant scientific and technical impact, as the development and validation of DrinkIA_DSS software involves several scientific disciplines, such as artificial intelligence, numerical modelling, chemical engineering, environmental assessment or economic management. New digitalisation and industry 4.0 solutions will be gathered which could also be applied in other phases of the urban water cycle.
At the socioeconomic level, the foreseen impact of WATSproof proof project is also high, as:
It will create new products (e.g. DrinKIA_DSS) and services (e.g. software implementation, maintenance and upgrade) for the water sector, and, subsequently, contribute to job creation and growth.
It will contribute to deliver safe and sufficient drinking water to citizens. Monitorisation capacity of these installations will be increased, and healthy issues such as DBP formation, will be addressed with more effective tools and instruments.
It will contribute to reduce costs and increase efficiency of DWTPs. This could prevent increase of prices and ensure fair access to drinking water for all citizens.
It will integrate challenges such as pandemic outbreaks or climate change events, into daily DWTPs operation. This would make these installations more resilient to future economic, environmental or health crisis.
It will contribute to meet Spanish and European environmental targets and policies, such as quality standards of the newly revised Europen drinking water directive, reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, increased energy efficiency or renewable fuels share.