Fundació URV

Nitrates-nitrites removal from water by Selective catalytic Hydrogenation technology

Posted by Fundació URVResponsive · Patents for licensing · Spain

Summary of the technology

The chemical formula of the catalyst designed by the researchers of the Rovira i Virgili University, is the key of the process, therefore is protected and commercialized by APLICAT. Winner of the enviromental award of the Catalan Government. Two semi industrilal plants are constructed and working in two towns of Tarragona, obtaining concentrations of nitrates lower than 20ppm

Description of the technology

Innovative technology developed at the University of Tarragona (Spain) capable to remove nitrates and nitrites from water, getting drinking water (desired values of nitrates < 50 ppm). The nitrates removal consists in a catalytic reaction that converts nitrates and nitrites into Nitrogen gas in one step using hydrogen gas as reactant. The reaction occurs in a catalytic reactor provided by APLICAT that works in a continuous mode. The products are nitrogen gas and clean water.


The nitrates reduction occurs inside of the reactor, that works in continuous mode. The catalytic rection is as follow: 2NO3- + 5H2 --> N2 + 4H2O + 2OH- 2NO2- + 3H2 --> N2 + 2H2O + 2OHOperation cost: 0,30 €/m3 The only reactant required is Hydrogen gas. "selective catalytic hydrogenation" means the addition of hydrogen to an exclusivelly compound as nitrate. The addition is possible just when the catalyst is present. Additional information (attached documents)- Nitrates removal.pdfAbout the

Main advantages of its use

  • Efficiency: Conversion>95%-All-purpose technology, accepts a wide range of nitrates concentration-Low energyconsumes
  • Environmental friendly: Clean technology, no wastes are generated-hydrogen gas is the reactant-catalyst durability >2years
  • Simple: atmospheric pressure-room temperature-small space required-reduced cost of installation


  • Industrial effluents
  • Polluted groundwater for future drinking uses

Related keywords

  • Clean Production / Green Technologies
  • Industrial Water Treatment
  • Industrial Products
  • Nitrates removal from water
  • nitrites removal from water
  • Selective catalytic Hydrogenation technology
  • drinking water
  • clean technologies
  • green technologies
  • Industrial effluents
  • Polluted groundwater

About Fundació URV

Technology Transfer Office from Spain

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