Environmental Engineering


Water safety – the focus of applied research

The environmental engineering department offers companies and communities field-specific product development and testing services and does applied research work in cooperation with companies and different research institutes in the field. International cooperation is important part of the department.

Applied research work concentrates on water safety and bioprocesses. The applied RDI work in water safety focuses on monitoring and simulation methods as well as on developing and testing the purification technologies especially in communal water supply, agriculture and industries with high water consumption such as mining and pulp and paper industries. As to bioprocesses, the focus is on developing new applications especially to convert organic industrial waste streams into energy and bio raw materials with the help of microbiological processes.

The special strength of the environmental engineering department is the capability and capacity of pilot-scale testing of water purification technologies and monitoring systems and applying these into practice. This makes it possible to apply new information and put it into practice in workable solutions. Moreover, it enables the testing of new innovations on the client’s field site. Pilot-scale testing and related equipment offer companies a unique possibility to test and develop new product innovations in the water sector.

One of the strengths of Savonia UAS is close cooperation with the research institutes in Kuopio Science Park and with international partner universities and universities of applied sciences. Savonia UAS has active cooperation with i.a. the University of Eastern Finland, Geological Survey of Finland, Natural Resources Institute Finland and with National Institute for Health and Welfare.

Test equipment at your disposal

Our pilot scale movable testing equipment makes successful process testing possible on the field sites defined by the client. The operations are supported by our water laboratory with high analytical capacity.

Versatile options

We test and develop water treatment processes, chemicals and equipment. In addition, we develop bioprocess applications for water treatment and biorefining.

Support for your product development

Our comprehensive test results provide new information on the features of your product to help you find a new path for your development work.

We offer education when needed

Water safety and waterworks operations are our strengths. Water treatment laboratories serve as learning environments for our environmental engineering education as well as for tailored training courses for companies.


The Product Development and Testing Services of Water Treatment Processes Including

  • Analysing services
  • Laboratory-scale product development and testing services
  • Pilot-scale product development and testing services

Environmental Monitoring, Database Services and Simulation

  • Hydraulic simulation and water balance management
  • Databased simulation and data analyses
  • Database services

Education Services

  • Water safety education
  • Pato training courses
  • Kokoeko seminars

Check out our brochures

Water safety – Savonia University of Applied Sciences
Biokaasun tuottokokeet

Facilities and Equipment

The operational environment and laboratories of the environmental engineering department are located in Kuopio Science Park, on the Microkatu campus. They contain a clean water testing hall of approx. 200 m², a waste water laboratory of approx. 100 m² and an analytical laboratory. The facilities are used in the education of Savonia UAS engineering students and the environmental sciences students at the University of Eastern Finland. In addition, the facilities include the Process Tomography Laboratory in the Department of Applied Physics at UEF.

Testing Hall

The testing hall is mainly used to develop water purification processes and quality monitoring methods. In addition, there is equipment for laboratory-scale testing of open channel, pipeline and groundwater flows. Water treatment tests can also be conducted under field conditions.

The testing hall contains i.a. pilot-scale surface waterworks (Qmit=3 m³/h) with required adjustment and automation systems as well as with a 600-meter-long water supply test system.

Wastewater Laboratory

The wastewater laboratory contains equipment for wastewater and sludge treatment and for biogas research. Wastewater and sludge tests can also be conducted under field conditions.

Analytical Laboratory

The Analytical Laboratory adjacent to the Testing Hall enables quick and flexible clean and wastewater analyses. The versatile laboratory equipment permits pilot-scale testing and demonstration of phenomena related to environmental engineering.

Projects (applied research)


Kuopio Water Cluster (KWC)

concentrates the research, development and innovation in water-sector in Pohjois-Savo region and Finland. The Cluster offers a one-stop solution for rapid product development, testing and commercialisation services for companies operating in the water technology sector.


  • Municipal water and wastewater treatment
  • Mining industry
  • Pulp & paper
  • Agriculture

Kuopio Water Cluster provides access to specialised laboratories, experts, and assisting personnel from all partnering organisations. Laboratory scale tests are combined with custom-made, containerised pilot-scale test-rigs allowing for rapid on-site demonstrations. KWC is ongoing during 2019 – 2021. https://kuopiowatercluster.com/

KOKOEKO – Current Waste Management Issues; Seminars

The KOKOEKO seminars are organised annually with an aim to bring together experts in the waste man-agement and environment sectors and help them reach a sustainable future together. The aim is to pro-vide information, visions and solutions in view of the challenges in the waste management and recycling sectors. The target groups are e.g. municipalities, authorities, business life, education and research insti-tutes. The seminars also enable increased interaction between businesses and municipalities by providing them with networking possibilities.

Examples of completed projects:

WaterPro – Northern Runoffs into Profits

Water-Pro (1.4.2016 – 31.3.2019) aims to develop and transfer eco-efficient tools and models for runoff management in the field of agriculture and mineral extraction in Northern and Arctic areas. Runoffs from both of these sectors have large volumes, but low concentrations of nutrients and other compounds – therefore some similar measures and practices could be utilised. Moreover, the climate change will bring further challenges in controlling runoffs and water safety in the near future. Lead partner Savonia University of Applied Sciences, other partners: Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute, Northern Ireland, Agricultural University of Iceland, Geological Survey of Finland, Lough Neagh Partnership Ltd, Northern Ireland, Luleå University of Technology, Sweden. The project is financed by The Northern Periphery and Arctic Programme 2014-2020. Read more on the project’s website.

VIRVE- Vigour from Water to Develop North Savo Business

The VIRVE project (1.1.2016 – 31.12.2017) aims to develop the commercialisation options of the water sector knowhow as well as the possibilities to promote business start-ups. The development work is supported by the expertise in Kuopio Science Park and RDI laboratories. The aim is to cre-ate the most attractive and versatile water business and product development ecosystem Kuopio Science Park to help develop and commercialise new innovations and applications and generate new business activities. Savonia UAS is in charge of the project implementation and it is financed by the Regional Council of Pohjois-Savo.

Water-M – Unified Intelligent Water Management

The WATER-M (1.8.2014 – 31.10.2016) project aims at developing water supply networks’ real-time operational control and optimisation as well as safety implemented by an international con-sortium. The leader of the consortium is France and research organisations and businesses in the water sectors in Romania, Turkey and Finland are engaged in the project. The project aims to de-velop e.g. smart calculation methods to simulate the hydraulic status of the water distribution networks (WDNs), changes in the pipeline water quality as well as water consumption. The project results enable the creation of real-time situational awareness of the WDNs based on both network models and smart calculation methods. Savonia UAS is responsible for the implementation of the pilot testing to verify the functionality of the monitoring system in practice. In Finland the project is financed by Tekes and it is part of the EU ITEA2 programme.

METVI – Energy-efficient Pretreatment of Forest Industry Wastewaters

The METVI project (1.7.2015 – 31.12.2017) aims at increasing the efficiency of the treatment pro-cess of paper and pulp mill wastewaters resulting in more cost-efficient organic load reduction and highly improved energy efficiency. The wastewater treatment process will be made more ef-ficient by developing the pretreatment of the inflowing water. This is done by applying the anaer-obic wastewater treatment process. At the same time biogas can be produced as the organic mat-ter in the wastewater degrades microbiologically under anaerobic conditions. The organic matter content reduction by using this technology decreases the amount of emerging sludge thus also decreasing the need for the tertiary treatment of sludge. In addition, the pretreatment significant-ly reduces the consumption of chemicals and energy of the actual sewage treatment plant pro-cesses. These factors contribute to significant cost savings as regards wastewater and sludge treatment and improve the energy efficiency of the processes. The METVI project is financed by the Regional Council of Pohjois-Savo, EAKR Flat Rate 2014-2020. Read more >>

KAIVOSVV – Network of Expertise in the Mine Water Sector

The KAIVOS VV project (1.11.2014 – 31.12.2017) brings together the Finnish mine water research organisations, service providers, mines, other operators and authorities to improve the impact of mine waters on the economic efficiency of the mines, process functions, environmental load and social acceptability. Mine waters form a complex whole and it is very difficult, if not quite impos-sible, for one organisation or small consortium to manage it fully. The implementing consortium of the project contains only a few members of the network. The Eastern Finland Office of the Geo-logical Survey of Finland is the leader of the project. The other partners are the National Institute for Health and Welfare, University of Easter Finland and Savonia University of Applied Sciences. The project is financed by the European Regional Development Fund.

FunktioMat – A Pilot- environment Development Project to Produce and Test Functional Ma-terials Industrially

The FunktioMat project (1.1.2016 – 31.12.2017) aims at developing the RDI environments at UEF and Savonia UAS and combining them into a functional entity to enable pilot-scale production and testing of functional materials for water purification as well as the testing of new technologies. Savonia UAS and partner companies are responsible for the material testing. The resulting mate-rial production and testing environment enables the implementation of large-scale national and international research projects. It also makes the business service provision to companies possible. The project promotes material efficiency and low carbon production by developing the use of in-dustrial shunt currents to produce functional materials. The project leader is UEF and Savonia UAS is a co-operator. The project is financed by the Regional Council of Pohjois-Savo.

iFORMINE – Innovative Mine Water Purification Solutions and Eco-efficient Piloting

The iFORMINE project (1.8.2016 – 31.7.2018) aims at developing new solutions to manage mine waters and to increase eco-efficiency. Efficient and safe management of water and material flows is being developed in cooperation with forest industry process experts and mining experts. Mikkeli University of Applied Sciences has the leading role in the project. Other partners are Savonia UAS, Lapland UAS, Lappeenranta University of Technology and the Geological Survey Finland. The pro-ject is financed by the Regional Council of South Savo and the European Regional Development Fund.

MAALi – Development Project; A Multi-element Analytics Laboratory

The strategic aims of the MAALi project (1.9.2016 – 30.9.2018) are to develop the research and education environment of environmental and material analytics and to strengthen and promote the position of environmental and material analytics at UEF. The practical aim is to acquire and introduce an inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) and an ion chromatograph (IC) equipment to enable cost-efficient inorganic analyses. The inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry enables broad metal quantifications with very low limits of quantification. The ion chromatograph (IC) enables the quantification of water soluble ions in the samples. The research teams at UEF do extensive research work in cooperation with business and this work benefits from the acquisition of the analysis equipment. The leader of the project is UEF and Savonia UAS is the co-operator. The project is financed by the European Regional Development Fund.

Water Security Knowhow in Kuopio Science Park and Recognition of Business Opportunities

The project (1.7.2012-31.12.2014) aimed at compiling the water security knowhow in Kuopio Science Park and creating an extensive educational programme on that basis to develop expertise and business activities.

LakeAdmin/Interreg IVC/EAKR

The LakeAdmin project (1.1.2012 – 31.12.2014) aimed at compiling a set of good practices for lake restoration and transferring them into practice in their regional planning and water management. For further information, please click: http://www.interreg4c.eu/projects/project-details/index-project=181-regional-administration-of-lake-restoration-initiatives&.html

METLI – Service Business Potential from Forest Industry Sludge

The METLI project (1.8.2012-30.6.2014) aimed at finding a holistic solution to the utilisation of forest industry sludge and at helping the players in the field to network. In addition, the aim was to produce information on the applicability of various sludge and sludge mixture treatment processes as well as on the qualities of the end products and their utilisation potential.

ABOWE project (Implementing Advanced Concepts for Biological Utilization of Waste)

ABOWE project (Implementing Advanced Concepts for Biological Utilization of Waste)(12/2012-12/2014) was an extension stage of the REMOWE project (Regional Mobilization of Sustainable Waste to Energy Production, 12/2009-12/2012). As a direct result from REMOWE, the partnership from six countries continued to work with two promising technologies, unlocking investments with support from the Baltic Sea Region Programme 2007-2013.

In ABOWE, two mobile pilot plants were built and tested by the partnership within the Baltic Sea Region. These pilots are Pilot A (based on a novel Biorefinery concept from Finnoflag Oy, Finland) and Pilot B (based on a German Dry Fer-mentation process). The pilot tests in different countries formed the basis for compilation of investment memos and organization of introductory seminars / investor events. Also the regional model, developed in REMOWE, was utilized to evaluate e.g. the feedstock potentials and climatic impacts of the new processes from the regions’ perspective.

The desired outcomes from ABOWE are implementer/investor driven continuation projects targeting full scale plant investments of the two technologies.


For further information, please click:



RAE – Nutrient Losses into Euros

The aim of the RAE project (1.6.2011 – 28.02.2015) was to help farms utilise nutrient losses efficiently to improve prof-itability. The project aimed at increasing farm nutrient recycling and reducing the nutrient content in the water system. It also aimed at producing and transferring knowledge of the most suitable cultivation methods in Eastern Finland and at creating an active network of players to support this work.

ERKKA – Energy-efficient Farm Buildings

The ERKKA project (1.9.2011 – 28.2.2015) aimed at examining how dairy farms can improve profitability by reducing energy costs. The focus was on increased energy efficiency and self-produced energy benefitting from renewable energy sources. The target groups were farms, advisors and civil engineers.

Contact information

RDI Manager
Eero Antikainen
Tel. 044 785 6325