Thames Water, a water and sewerage company, has partnered with Ostara Nutrient Recovery Technologies (ONRT) on a project to recover phosphorus and ammonia from Slough Sewage Treatment Works’ wastewater stream and transform them into a commercial fertiliser.

Under this project, to be developed at Thames Water’s Slough Sewage Works, Ostara will design, build and finance the nutrient recovery facility scheduled to be completed in mid-2011, while Thames Water will pay a monthly fee for treatment capacity provided by the Ostara system.

Though the implementation of the project, Thames Water hopes to enable Slough to meet nutrient limits, reduce operational costs, save £130,000 to £200,000 a year in chemical costs and concurrently produce a fertiliser called Crystal Green, which is currently being sold in North America.

Ostara’s Nutrient Recovery Facility at Slough that is estimated to yield 150 tonnes a year of Crystal Green fertiliser will share the revenue derived from the production and sale of Crystal Green with Thames Water, thereby enhancing the economics of the partnership.

The project execution follows the deployment of a pilot-scale Nutrient Recovery Facility at Slough Sewage Works that began operating in March 2010 to demonstrate the technology’s potential to support the plant’s biological phosphorus removal process prior to a full-scale implementation.

Ostara board member Robert Kennedy said that this partnership between Thames Water and Ostara provides a cost-effective solution that benefits the environment at all stages, and exhibits the shift towards closed-loop sustainable technologies.