AQUATEAM COWI AS is a research institute within the water and environmental sectors. It drives independent applied research based on support from COWIfonden, as well as commercial oriented- research.

Aquateam COWI possess a broad national and international network of relevant actors to provide our customers with the best tailored-made solutions or to support SME companies in qualification and verification of technology performance. Over the years, the institute has been participating in national, regional, and international R&D projects within the EU framework programs, EEA-Grants, Norwegian Research Council and Regional Research Founds.

We work closely with lead universities and other research institutes from Norway and abroad, as well as actively participate in the supervising and competence building of graduate students and in dissemination activities.

Research topics

Water, wastewater, waste and resource recovery

AQUATEAM COWI has more than 30 years of experience in the domain of water and wastewater treatment, as well as management and treatment of sludge, sediment and soil. Aquateam COWI has been involved as research or independent third party in many successful cases that contributed to the development of the Norwegian environmental technology field, e.g.: CFU (Compact Flotation Units), MBBR (Moving Bed Biofilm Reactor), CFIC (Continuous Flow Intermittent Cleaning biofilm reactor) and RBS (Rotating Belt Sieves)).

Aquateam COWI has undergo several R&D studies on the possibilities of recovering nutrients from waste and wastewater fractions such as reject water at wastewater plants, an-aerobically digested sewage sludge and organic waste, or incinerated sludge at incineration plants. Aquateam COWI evaluates the efficiency of applying recovery technologies and the best applicable option for each case study.


AQUATEAM COWI is specialist in Environmental Risk assessment. Environmental fate and effect of chemicals and micropollutants has been one key R&D area, and Aquateam COWI supported the Norwegian environmental authorities in the development and implementation of environmental risk assessment for contaminated soil and groundwater, and the OSPAR in the development CHARM (Chemical Hazard And Risk Management) system for oilfield chemicals. Some of Aquateam COWI’s specializations include ecotoxicological studies in freshwater and marine environment, accumulation in the food chain, leaching tests for resource utilization assessment and special studies related to degradation and persistence.


Studies on water quality and treatment in the industrial sector is another of Aquateam COWI’s domains. Technology assessments in water purification, process control and monitoring and technology qualification and assessment of Best Available Techniques (BAT) are some examples. With the different pilot-scale test rigs that Aquateam COWI laboratory poses, the performance of controlled- certified testing and verification of technological processes in pilot or full-scale, as well as the support in the commercialization process of new and emerging technological solutions, are key Aquateam COWI’s activities.

Our Laboratory

Aquateam COWI is owner of a specialized laboratory equipped with e.g.:

  • Malvern Mastersizer – particle size measurement
  • Malvern Zetasizer – measuring zeta potential
  • Strathkelvin Strathtox – nitrification inhibition tests
  • OiW Eracheck EC01 – determination of oil concentration
  • FlowCam VS IC – dynamic particle analysis system
  • CytoSense – flow cytometer
  • Bioprosess control AMPTS II –methane potential measuring device
  • TOC Tot-N analyzer Shimadzu
  • Ion Chromatograph (Organic acids)
  • Microscopy/electronic microscope
  • Glove Box for work under anaerobic atmosphere conditions

Aquateam COWI also owns several pilot treatment technology test rigs including:

  • DAF – dissolved air flotation unit
  • Membrane filtration units (NF, UF) with SiC ceramic membranes
  • Dolly © double semi-CSTR system for continuous methane fermentation trials
  • AOP -Advanced Oxidation test rig for Electro Oxidation (EO).