Proyect Overview

Duration: June 1996 – December 2003
Partners: MSI Soc. Coop., Consorcio de Aguas Bilbao-Bizkaia, CADAGUA S.A.


  1. Design, development and validation of new control strategies to optimise the operation of the new Galindo-Bilbao WWTP
  2. Design, development and validation of new industrial control products to optimize the operation of nutrient removal in WWTPs

Visitors at WWTP Glindo / Bilbao PlantMethodology

The first phase of the work focused on the design, development and verification of the most appropriate operational strategy for the biological treatment at the Galindo-Bilbao WWTP using both mathematical modelling and pilot-plant experimentation. Once the pilot plant was modelled and calibrated, the optimum operational strategies of the process were designed using model-based optimisation algorithms. The resulting automatic controllers were developed and verified by model simulation and pilot-scale experimentation. Finally, the partners of the research project decided to take on the full-scale development, implementation and validation of the control strategies at one of the six lines of the Galindo-Bilbao WWTP.

Technical Results

  1. The automatic control solution designed to optimise the operation of the WWTP of Galindo-Bilbao has been able to facilitate a very stable operation of the biological process, to improve the effluent quality (total nitrogen) and to lower simultaneously the air flow needed for the appropriate operation of the plant. In fact, the control strategy developed in the project has been implemented to the six lines of the plant.
  2. The successful results obtained during the experimental validation at full scale have brought about, as the final step in the R&D project, the development of a commercial control product.