UWMH focuses on Research and Innovation activities undertaken within the framework of National and European Research and Development projects and find their way into practice through the provision of consultancy services



    DURATION: 01.06.2020 to 31.05.2024

    BUDGET: 581,500.00€/16,614,813.75€

    FUNDING: H2020 Greening the economy in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), Innovation Action



    ULTIMATE: industry water-utility symbIosis for a smarter water society is a four year H2020 Innovation Action project funded by topic Greening the economy in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and aims to act as a catalyst for “Water Smart Industrial Symbiosis” (WSIS) in which water/wastewater plays a key role both as a reusable resource but also as a vector for energy and materials to be extracted, treated, stored and reused within a dynamic socio-economic and business oriented industrial ecosystem.

    • We adopt an evidence-based approach anchored on 9 large-scale demonstrations across Europe and SE Mediterranean relevant to the agro-food processing, beverages, heavy chemical/petrochemical and biotech industries.
    • We recover, refine and reuse wastewater (industrial and municipal) but also extract and exploit energy (combined water-energy management, treatment processes as energy producers, water-enabled heat transfer, storage and recovery) and materials (nutrient mining and reuse, extraction and reuse of high-added-value exploitable compounds) contained in industrial wastewater.
    • We support the cases and ensure their replicability through smart tools to optimize and control, assess costs and benefits, minimize risks and help stakeholders identify, assess and explore alternative symbiotic pathways linked to emerging business opportunities, supported by tailored contracts and investment schemes.

    ULTIMATE nurtures partnerships between business (incl. industrial and technological ecosystems), water service providers, regulators and policy makers and actively supports them through immersive Mixed Reality storytelling using technology and art to coproduce shared visions for a more circular, profitable, socially responsible and environmentally friendly industry, with water at its centre. The project mobilises a strong partnership of industrial complexes and symbiosis clusters, leading water companies and water service providers, specialised SMEs, research institutes and water-industry collaboration networks, and builds on an impressive portfolio of past and ongoing research and innovation, leveraging multiple European and global networks to ensure real impact.


    In ULTIMATE our role is to enrich NEXUS approaches by revealing the importance of recovered materials and other water and energy connections, both on the microeconomic (industrial) and the macroeconomic level (industrial symbiosis schemes). For this reason, the concept of the Sherwood plot (i.e the relationship between the cost of recovering a material from a water matrix -or generally a feed stream- and its dilution in the water matrix) is adopted to propose optimal industrial ecosystem symbiotic paths.

    We also, develop a set of KPIs that span the technological, environmental and socio-economic domains that are able to capture the performance of circular eco-innovations and trace their trajectories in the short, medium and long run. These approaches constitute part of an online tool that will be developed in the framework of Ultimate for the assessment of performance of alternative water-based industrial symbiosis schemes.

    Additionally, our contribution focuses on the design and application of new financial instruments adopted to Circular Economy and Water Smart Industrial Symbiosis Schemes, such as the principles of “chemical leasing” (ChL), that focuses on the identification of specific features of chemicals in order to achieve optimal utilization per use in terms of sustainability.

    Read more about Ultimate’s objectives and results here.


    + 30 210 7722828-2886

    NTUA Campus, Heroon Polytechneiou str. 9, 15780, Zographou, Athens Greece, Hydraulics Building