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LOTUS consortium holds a fruitful meeting at l’X

The second meeting of the LOTUS consortium took place from June 19 to 21 at École Polytechnique, bringing together partners from Europe and India. The objective of the meeting was to analyze the preliminary results of the project and determine how to implement the first use cases.

Officially launched this February, the LOTUS project involves 21 European and Indian partners (research centers, SMEs, public authorities, NGOs), focused on the goal of co-creating, co-designing and co-developing new low-cost technologies to solve India’s water problems.

India is facing many problems with its drinking water supply, wastewater treatment and management of distribution systems. Only 30% of the population has access to drinking water supplied by a properly treated source, often for just a few hours a day and not necessarily every day. Almost 38 million Indians per year suffer from an illness related to poor water quality, many of them children.

The rapid industrialization of the economy and urbanization are placing heavy pressure on the water supply system, and many regions have a shortage of water for agriculture, a situation further aggravated by climate change. The solutions to these problems must adapted to an India-specific context, and also be low-cost in order to benefit as many people as possible.

LOTUS is a follow-up to the European Commission's PROTEUS project. Through cooperation between European and Indian partners, LOTUS aims to co-design and co-produce an innovative water quality sensor using advanced technologies (carbon nanotubes).

The proposed sensor can be tailored to meet the different needs of a range of uses, for instance, monitoring drinking water quality, treating wastewater, monitoring water in the surrounding area, and irrigation systems. LOTUS will also develop innovative methodologies and software for water management using this new technology.

The solution developed by LOTUS will be tested in a variety of use cases across India in both urban and rural areas. It will be adapted to a wide variety of water types: networked drinking water, drinking water from storage tanks, irrigation water, groundwater, river water or treated sewage water.

Once the project has finished, development and production of the sensors are expected to continue in India, to work towards a low-cost and cutting-edge solution for water quality monitoring and water management.

The LOTUS project is financed through a €5-million budget from the European Commission, as part of the Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Program, and the Indian government, and it is coordinated by École Polytechnique and the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay.

The next plenary meeting of the LOTUS project will take place in India in December.