Clean water
Treatment of natural radioactivity in water for human consumption
Environmental sustainability
Reduction of environmental impact and GHG emissions
European LIFE project
Development of 3 pilot plants in Spain and 1 pilot plant in Estonia
Dissemination project results
Development a network on sustainable radioactivity treatment

Towards a smart & integral treatment of natural radioactivity in water provision services

LIFE ALCHEMIA addresses one of the current challenges of water for human consumption such as the presence of natural radioactivity. There is a considerable lack of knowledge by the actors involved and it can be stated that, despite the current legislation (Directive 2013/51/Euratom), radioactivity is not systematically monitored at European level. Indeed, this is an environmental problem that cannot be solved at source, as it is generated by the groundwater dilution of minerals rich in radioactive isotopes, mainly from uranium (U), radium (Ra) and thorium (Th) series. Therefore, new systems able to provide sustainable removal of radioactivity from a cost-effectiveness point of view are needed. Reverse osmosis (RO) is the most commonly treatment used for this application; however carbon footprint of this process is very high and generates large volumes of water rejection with radioactivity that needs further treatment. LIFE ALCHEMIA offers a breakthrough in this problem from two angles. First, with the use of removal systems based on bed filters, which will reduce up to five times the cost of the water purification. Moreover, the whole life cycle of the radioactivity will be considered, including the management of the waste generated.

To demonstrate the technical and economic feasibility of bed filters that will be optimized to remove radioactivity from water and to minimize the generation of Naturally Occurring Radioactive Materials (NORM) exceeding the exemption level...
The structure of the project ensures its successful implementation, since there is an effective interaction between the activities foreseen. The duration of the project will be 39 months, starting on 02/10/2017 and ending on 31/12/2020...
In quantitative terms, LIFE ALCHEMIA will lead to the following results: 4 filter-based pilot plants will provide removal rates of gross alpha and beta activity up to 90%, and reductions in the concentrations of specific radionuclides (U and Ra) between 75% and 90%...

Improving drinking water quality

Building a sustainable future

Project news

Latest activity in LIFE ALCHEMIA

First promotional video of LIFE ALCHEMIA

The first promotional video of LIFE ALCHEMIA is already available in our YouTube channel; if you prefer, you can watch […]

First tests with the lab-sized scale plant in the DWTP from Benizalón

LIFE ALCHEMIA team moved the lab-sized scale plant built by CIESOL to the DWTP from Benizalón to carry out different […]

The 4th International Congress Water, Waste and Energy Management had LIFE ALCHEMIA among its attenders

The 4th International Congress Waste, Water and Energy Management, hold in Madrid on 18th, 19th and 20th July, count on […]

LIFE ALCHEMIA is going to attend the congress Water, Waste and Energy Management

The city of Madrid is going to host the congress Water, Waste and Energy Management organized by the Universidad Complutense […]

LIFE ALCHEMIA was present in the XIII Spanish Meeting of Water Treatment

LIFE ALCHEMIA was present in the XIII Spanish Meeting of Water Treatment organized by the Spanish Board of Water Treatment […]

The first databases compilling the DWTP that treat water containing natural radioactivity in different European countries are already available

The development of a database compilling the drinking water treatment plants (DWTP) that treat water containing natural radioactivity along Europe […]


NORM reduction percentage generated during the elimination of radioactivity


Cost reduction percentage in water treatment


Alpha and beta reduction percentage radioactivity in pilot plants


Environmental impact reduction percentage


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DWTP Database

Get access to our database of drinking water treatment plants (DWTP) that treat water with natural radioactivity in Europe