The Project


AquaSPICE aims at materializing circular water use in European Process Industries, fostering awareness in resource-efficiency and delivering compact solutions for industrial applications. The project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the agreement No 958396. AquaSPICE has a total duration of 51 months (01/12/2020-28/02/2025).





Case Studies






For the vast majority of industrial products, water is used during some stages of the production process. It is estimated that 20% of all freshwater consumption globally is used by industry and this share can increase to 50% in industrialized countries. The industrial sector also has a major impact on water quality with requirements expected to tighten in the future.

Eco-efficient and sustainable industrial water management is key within the integrated water resources management strategy, being one of the most important focus areas for environmental protection in many EU countries. Innovation in water treatment can bring close loops to at almost 100% for important industrial water users. This is where the AquaSPICE project steps in.


The AquaSPICE overall goal is the development and validation of water efficiency management and optimization methodologies, technologies and tools that will carry process industries forward to a near-zero water footprint target with minimum freshwater consumption and water-borne emissions. This is pursued through a set of scientific and technical objectives, motivated by real industrial needs analysed through six case studies and a set of impact-related objectives.

Deliver a methodological and technical water efficiency enhancement applications framework for the process industry.

Deliver methodologies and tools as-a-service to support the assessment and optimal application of novel or already established best practices for water recovery and re-use.

Deliver methodologies and tools as-a-service to support the application of advanced industrial water technologies enabling industrial water recovery/treatment.

Deliver a monitoring platform, ensuring the continuous and uninterrupted acquisition of reliable, cybersecure and homogenized dynamic data.

Deliver a virtualisation (digital twin) of water use-recovery-reuse processes and their relations to the production system, its value chain(s) and external connections.

Deliver an intelligent water- and situation-aware water cyber-physical system (WaterCPS).

Organize and facilitate the uptake, replication and upscaling of the technological solutions developed by AquaSPICE.

Deploy, test, demonstrate, evaluate and validate the main AquaSPICE results.

Plan and facilitate the exploitation of project results.

Communicate and disseminate the project’s scientific and technical results.

Expected results and impacts

Significant reduction of the current use of fresh water resources at the five case studies.

Significant steps towards near-zero discharge using closed-loop systems in industrial processes.

Significant increase of the recovery of water, energy and/or substances and materials.

Increase of resource and water efficiency by 30% compared to the state-of-the-art.

Effective dissemination of innovation outcomes to the current and next generation of employees.

Τhe replication potential of the AquaSPICE through the Water Efficiency Enhancement Framework.