Ongoing Projects


HYDROUSA is an EU Innovation project submitted and approved under call topic CIRC-02-2016-2017 (Water in the context of the circular economy) (Grant Agreement No. 776643). The aim of the project is to counteract the annual summer-time water-shortages experienced in touristically active regions by the implementation of innovative nature-based systems, at the same time creating jobs and added economic value by merging the individual elements of the water-e... Read more


HOUSEFUL is an EU Innovation project submitted and approved under call topic CIRC-1-2017 (Systemic, eco-innovative approaches to the circular economy: large scale demonstration projects) (Grant Agreement No. 776708). The projects aim to develop technical solutions in combination with building-level services to be offered within the framework of closed loop management models. The focus is on solutions that enable the efficient use of water, waste, energy a... Read more

pop-up environments
pop-up environments

Urban pop-up housing environments and their potential as local innovation systems The need for temporary housing particularly in urban environments is expected to increase dramatically. To address these urgent demands, it is important to find affordable and flexible but sustainable and reusable concepts that are easy to construct and rapid to implement. However, to go one step further, temporary housing will be... Read more

ReCO2ST overview

ReCO2ST is an H2020 European Union Project addressing the challenges of attaining zero and near-zero energy buildings. The project proposes for the refurbishment of existing building via a systemic 3-step approach: First, the project Refurbishment Assessment Tool (RAT) will identify possible refurbishment scenarios. Secondly, the refurbishment actions will be mapped out (regarding order and costs) using an Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) vehicle; and... Read more

Automate vertECO
vertECO wood

The main innovation of this project is the coupling of the system with customised sensor & control units that verify the quality of treated and purified greywater, ensuring the accordance with the required standards for other uses (e.g. toilet flushes, irrigation systems, washing machines). The system is also equipped with a special software, based on control algorithms and user-defined settings, which is able to monitor sensor data responding to water qua... Read more


Application of DRAINGARDEN® next to highways
 Feasibility study of functional greening areas on high volume motorway sites Precipitation runoffs of streets flow off fast and to a great extend complete. Accumulated substances on road surfaces are taken up by precipitation runoffs and evacuated. Runoffs constitute a load for hydrologic balance and can lead in a danger for under- and aboveground waters. Through systems for discharge, retention,... Read more

Plant laboratory

The project plant laboratory or “Pflanzenwerkstatt” in German aims to create a new approach of plant production and food production to students of different ages and backgrounds. With a focus on circular economy and urban farming we will demonstrate new concepts directly in classrooms. Hydroponic systems will be installed in different schools and students will have the responsibility to grow crops and take over control throughout the whole life cycle.... Read more

Farmbot 2.0

Re-Design of the robot “Farmbot“ Garden robots are automated units to be used in gardening and agriculture with the aim to automatize and optimize crop cultivation. Garden robots can be controlled via electronic devices like computers, tablets and smartphones. Together with alchemia-nova 2expn+1 plans to develop a modular modell in three sizes, which can also be used for plant cultivation in interior spaces. Farmbot is expected to measure plant... Read more

Bioplastics Roadmap Austria 2050
Hourglass with crude oil pump

Plastics from fossil raw materials are associated with numerous environmental problems. Potential negative effects arise from the promotion of crude oil through the whole chain to the disposal of plastics. Only a small part of the produced plastics is recycled, the main part is deposited, thermally recycled or pollutes the environment. The long endurance of plastic products  is a serious problem for ecosystems, as they accumulate in considerable amounts.... Read more


Green Integrated Structural Elements for Retrofitting and New Construction of Buildings Plants have numerous positive effects on humans and urban microclimate. Plants remove toxic or harmful substances like volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from the surrounding air, they therefore reduce air pollution and mitigate urban heat island effects. The integration of plants in buildingfronts will provide further benefits such as additional... Read more

Agromining chain

Cropping hyperaccumulator plants on nickel-rich soils and wastes for the green synthesis of pure nickel compounds Phytomining can offer an eco-efficient alternative to recover valuable metals from low grade ores with naturally occuring processes in plants. Based on the results from the projects Bio-Ore and PhytoMine the environmental and socio-economic viability of the phytomining cycle will be demonstrated in this project.... Read more

water body with red algae

Green Recovery of Metals Tapping the results from Bio-Ore and PhytoMine, GRecoMet  is set up as a pioneering project exploring new pathways of non-ferrous metal recovery. Metals, diffusely dispersed in waste incineration ash, are brought in solution through microbial leaching in an environmentally friendly and cost-effective way. Depending on the characteristics of the different metals and the specific method, up to 100% mobilization is expected. The... Read more

organic Aloe vera

Ecologically-sustainable agriculture in Yucatán / Mexico In Mexico, the survival in rural areas is almost impossible. Destruction of large tracts of rainforest by slash and burn, absence of economic opportunities, lack of infrastructure, underpaid working conditions and the dependence on the United States characterize not only the lives of farmers, but also the lives of the rest of the rural population. The focus of this project is the... Read more

Completed Projects

MFA biobased industry
paradigm change

Material flow analysis of the material utilisation of fossil carbon in Austria with a focus on the transformation into a bio-based industry The aim of the project is the survey of the current material flow of carbon for material utilisation and the determination of biobased substitution options for Austria. The established fossil value chains will be interconnected to the compiled development pathways, identifying areas of a quantitative overburden of... Read more

Establish high surface area for substrate

Within this project metal accumulating plant species were cultivated on different slag substrate mixtures in lab and field scale experiments to analyse the uptake of metals in various plants, as well as plant parts. These trials took place for two years in the green house and two years in field trials on the landfill Rautenweg to gather application-oriented data for the implementation of the concept of recovering metals by hyperaccumulating plants.... Read more


The use of greywater is an ecologically and economically sensible alternative for applications where no drinking water quality is required. To use nature as a model to make ecosystem services more comprehensible a vertical ecosystem (VertECO) was developed. The greywater (slightly dirty water without faeces, e.g. shower, bath, sinks, …) is purified on a indoor constructed wetlands inside the building. This greywater purification system has a cascading... Read more


Residential Wagon, an ideal second home mobile originated from natural materials and honest craftsmanship. To the idea of ​​going self-sufficiency the function was set ahead the design. The company Wohnwagon GmbH has approached us for innovative opportunities - closing resources-, nutrient- and energy cycles. Depending on the task, appropriate technologies have been proposed in order to come closer to the lofty goal. Of interest were the different... Read more

bio-ore trials

Recovering metals from sewage sludge and similar substances by hyperaccumulator plants. The enrichment of metals from diffusely distributed concentrations (e.g. sewage and sewage sludges), is possible using currently available technology systems only with great expenditure of energy. This exploratory project investigates the usability of the adaptation strategy of plants that hyperaccumulate metals in their tissue. Different analysis should... Read more


In Austria there is no focal point where conscious consumers can buy products for all needs, allowing an eco-social lifestyle at high level. Hence, the idea to create a web-shop tool was born via which products are offered characterised by higher quality in terms of ecological compatibility, resource conservation, social value and sustainability. The website helps enable the customer to quickly and easily obtain comprehensive information about the quality... Read more

gugler house

This project is a "Building of Tomorrow Plus" key project. The aim of this key project is a new dimension of sustainability: cradle to cradle for operation and buildings, which means zero emission, zero energy, zero waste. This will be shown by the lighthouse project Gugler GmbH, a modern sustainable media service operation (classic print and new media, which will be extended from the current level about 2100 square meters and about 90 employees to... Read more


Until now kernels occur in Austria and neighboring countries in large quantities only as waste. Although incurred in the production of jams, liqueurs, juices, etc. every year more than 550 000 tonnes of kernels accure. The biomass isn't allocated to a valorisation, generally the seeds rot or be burned. In Austria, although some products from fruit kernels are available, but they are imported. The appreciation of our original resources will not take... Read more


Innovative utilization strategies for biomass from sunflower The sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.) is one of the world's four most important plants with rapeseed, soy and peanut for edible oil production. In addition, the seeds are also used as ingredients in breads, granola bars, snacks.... The aim of the Helicas project is to develop bio-cascading through new uses of sunflower and to integrate besides seeds, stem as well as leaves and flowers, the... Read more

Loop Linz

Model project with bioplastics As part of the pilot project loop linz, supermarkets in Upper Austria sold different products in plastic packaging made ​​from vegetable starch in the spring of 2005. The new packaging reduces CO2 emissions by up to 50 percent. After use they belong to organic compost. The pilot project aimed to promote and demonstrate how well this innovation works in practice. The initiative was made by alchemia-nova, the Institute... Read more