What if we could recover phosphates in waste water and use them to grow food for the world?

We believe that technology is the link to end unnecessary phosphate run-off and allow us to put that precious natural resource to better use. 


Specifically, we are interested in solutions that improve energy saving and lower sludge production in an overall N/P removal process. 

Download the Full Challenge Brief for more details! 

This is the challenge for you if…

  • You want to save energy and avoid pollution from the phosphate mining industry
  • You want to improve sludge reduction
  • You want to fight global phosphorus scarcity and recover phosphate from wastewater
  • You want to reduce costs for wastewater plants

Submit your solutions and collaborate with startups, citizenscience and NGO’s on HelloScience Collaboration space and get the ball rolling. 

More about the challenge

Phosphates are precious and energizing nutrients. Yet phosphates are simply lost as run-off from wastewater plants – mainly because phosphate recovery today is a very complex process with phosphate-accumulating microorganisms and chemical precipitation facing challenges. 

This is truly a waste for the planet, but it is also a waste for the plants that are facing increasingly tough environmental regulations and rising costs. 

There has to be another way. 

Accelerate your project with a SciCube

Each month, we offer three unique SciCubes to the HelloScience community. To begin with, the winners of the SciCubes are selected by Novozymes. However, when we reach 100 collaborators, the power of choosing the winners will move to the community. 

Each SciCube* contains: 

  • A selection of enzyme and microbe samples from Novozymes. You can choose up to three samples in total. 
  • Cloud-enabled monitoring solution for one system including 1 year data subscription from Grundfos.
  • Skype meetings with experts from Novozymes and Grundfos matching your specific business/technical needs. 
  • A one-hour Skype meeting with Novozymes’ waste water team and investments team and/or Grundfos business development team tailored to the needs of your business or solution. 

*All SciCube® winners have the right to file patents within the water challenge theme, and there is no obligation to develop or commercialise any project with a specific partner. Samples are only to be used within the challenge theme and a simple SciCube agreement must be signed to receive the SciCube

Win a co-development opportunity with Novozymes and/or Grundfos

The best idea across all five water challenges will get a co-development agreement with Novozymes and Grundfos.  

The winner will get expert resources valued up to US$100,000 as well as lab access for trials or prototyping and specialist expertise within R&D, commercial and IP. All tailored to the needs of the winner and all to help the winning solution to a better product and a faster route to market.