Development of software tools based on EXPOVAL algorithms for the design of wastewater treatment facilities (EXPOPLAN)


Design software for the application of DWA Topic "Design of wastewater treatment plants in warm and cold climates"

With the objective to provide software tools for worldwide applicable design of wastewater treatment plants, the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) have sponsored the EXPOPLAN joint project since August 2017.

Results of EXPOVAL research as basis of the new software tools

In October 2016 the results of the EXPOVAL project have been published in the internationally oriented DWA Topic T4/2016 "Design of wastewater treatment plants in warm and cold climates", which provides design approaches and example calculations considering the divergent wastewater-specific and climatic conditions obtaining in different regions worldwide, in particular regarding high or low wastewater temperatures (5 - 30 °C). The design approches comprise activated sludge plants, trickling filters, anaerobic reactors and different types of wastewater ponds as well as digesters, solar sludge drying plants and disinfection systems. They will be the base for the new software tools.

Two ways to get access to the new design software

For the design of treatment plants, the new software will be provided by two different distribution ways:

  • A web-based design tool can be used free of charge for own calculations.
  • The design algorithms will be made available in a sublibrary of the state-of-the-art design and simulation software SIMBA#.

In addition to the design, both software tools will provide information about costs and environmental impacts (CO2-footprint) of the selected treatment solutions.


Involvement of four project partners

The EXPOPLAN joint project is coordinated by the Institute for Automation and Communication ifak e.V. The institute has developed the internationally well-known SIMBA software for modelling of wastewater treatment plants.

The further-development and adoption of the design algorithms as well as the implementation of additional aspects like costs or CO2 footprints are conducted by the scientific partners Leibniz-Universität Hannover and Ruhr-Universität Bochum.

Aspects of the practical application of the design approaches will be introduced by Emscher Wassertechnik GmbH, which has coordinated the prior EXPOVAL joint project.

Project duration

BMBF-sponsored project duration: 08/2017 – 07/2019.

Sponsorship by BMBF

The EXPOLPAN project is sponsored by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) (reference codes: 02WA1450A to 02WA1450C).

Contact to the project partners

ifak - Institut für Automation und Kommunikation e.V., Geschäftsfeld Wasser und Energie
(Institute of Automation and Communication, Department for Water and Energy)
Werner-Heisenberg-Str. 1, 39106 Magdeburg
Contact person:
Dr. Jens Alex,

Leibniz Universität Hannover, Institut für Siedlungswasserwirtschaft und Abfalltechnik (ISAH)
(Institute of Environmental Engineering and Waste Technology)
Welfengarten 1, 30167 Hannover
Contact persons:
Prof. Dr. Stephan Köster,
Dr. Maike Beier,

Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Lehrstuhl für Siedlungswasserwirtschaft und Umwelttechnik (LSU)
(Chair of Urban Water Management and Environmental Engineering)
Universitätsstr. 150, 44780 Bochum
Contact persons:
Prof. Dr. Marc Wichern,
Dr. Manfred Lübken,

Emscher Wassertechnik GmbH
Brunnenstr. 37, 45128 Essen
Contact persons:
Prof. Dr. Holger Scheer,
Dr. Tim Fuhrmann,
Peter Wulf,


Sponsored by BMBF