Visit the Challenge Center

InnoCentive is now Wazoku.

Innovative Process for High Organic Content Sludge Treatment
  • Award: $20000 USD
  • Challenge type: Theoretical - Licensing
  • Challenge under evaluation

Challenge overview

ABSTRACT

One of the common by-products of industrial activity is sludge: a solid, semisolid, or slurry residual material generated in the process of wastewater treatment. Often, sludges are characterized by high total organic carbon (TOC) content (i.e., TOC exceeding 6%); they need to be treated before being disposed of in landfills.

This Challenge is looking for new and improved methods of TOC reduction that would be less energy-consuming and more environmentally friendly than currently available.

This Theoretical Challenge requires only a written proposal.

 

OVERVIEW

One of the common by-products of industrial activity is sludge: a solid, semisolid, or slurry residual material generated in the process of wastewater treatment. Often, sludges are characterized by high total organic carbon (TOC) content (i.e., TOC exceeding 6%); they need to be treated before being disposed of in landfills.

Methods to reduce TOC in sludge to acceptable levels are available, but they are energy-consuming and by themselves generate large amounts of atmospheric emissions. This Challenge is, therefore, looking for new and improved methods of TOC reduction (i.e., below 6% TOC) that would be less energy-consuming and more environmentally friendly than currently available.

This is a Theoretical Challenge that requires only a written proposal to be submitted. The Challenge award will be contingent upon the theoretical evaluation of the proposal by the Seeker.

To receive an award, the Solvers will not have to transfer their exclusive IP rights to the Seeker. Instead, Solvers will grant the Seeker a non-exclusive license to practice their solutions. 

Submissions to this Challenge must be received by 11:59 PM (US Eastern Time) on November 29, 2022.

Late submissions will not be considered.

 

ELIGIBILITY

Employees of the Iren Group and its subsidiaries (and members of their families) are not eligible to receive awards for this Challenge.

ABOUT THE SEEKER

Iren is one of the largest and most dynamic multi-utility companies in Italy. It operates in many sectors including the generation and distribution of electricity, production of thermal energy for district heating, and gas. It also manages electric grids and provides integrated water services, as well as environmental and technological services.

Iren serves a multiregional area in the Northwest of Italy. It employs more than 9,000 people and provides a portfolio of services in the energy sector (2 million customers), integrated water sector (2.8 million customers), and waste cycle sector (2.9 million customers). Iren is the largest operator in Italy in the production of thermal energy for district heating.

Iren operates mainly through its business units: Iren Energia, Ireti, Iren Mercato, and Iren Ambiente. The current Challenge is sponsored primarily by Iren Ambiente, a company dealing with integrated environmental services.

 

What is the Wazoku Crowd?

Imagine a world where any problem you have can be looked at by millions of expert, motivated eyes. The Wazoku Crowd makes this possible. With twenty years of experience in crowdsourcing, the Wazoku Crowd is the gold standard for open talent and external innovation solutions. Commercial, governmental and humanitarian organizations engage with the Wazoku Crowd to solve problems that can impact humankind in areas ranging from the environment to medical advancements.

What is a Theoretical-Licensing Challenge?

A Wazoku Crowd Theoretical Challenge builds upon an idea but is not yet a proof of concept. A solution to a Theoretical Challenge will solidify the Solver’s concept with detailed descriptions, specifications and requirements necessary to bringing a good idea closer to becoming an actual product or service.

This Challenge is a Theoretical-Licensing Challenge, meaning that the Seeker is requesting non-exclusive rights to use the winning solution. Solvers that do not win retain the rights to their solution after the evaluation period is complete. The Seeker retains no rights to any IP not awarded.