The CTTÉI inaugurates a clean technology laboratory unique in Canada

Sorel-Tracy, November 16, 2021 - The Centre de transfert technologique en écologie industrielle (CTTÉI) is inaugurating a state-of-the-art laboratory, unique in Quebec and Canada, dedicated to the development of hydrothermal oxidation and supercritical fluids.

The infrastructure is the result of an investment of C$2.5 million and several years of work by the CTTÉI team, affiliated with the Cégep de Sorel-Tracy. It was made possible thanks to funding from the Canada Foundation for Innovation, the Ministère de l'Enseignement supérieur du Québec and Desjardins.

It is the first pilot-scale hydrothermal oxidation laboratory in Canada. Hydrothermal oxidation technology treats waste by breaking down organic matter and destroying pollutants, while producing energy. The process uses water at high temperature and pressure. It does not use toxic solvents, does not produce flames or smoke, and does not generate environmentally harmful compounds.

Several opportunities in prospect

In addition to offering a solution for the treatment of municipal sludge from aerated lagoons, the hydrothermal oxidation process has many application opportunities, for example in the treatment of waste from the paper industry, hospital effluents and microplastics.

The economic evaluation models developed by the CTTÉI demonstrate its competitiveness with landfill in a majority of the cases studied. Over 25 projects and 40 partners have been identified for future use.

The new 167m2 laboratory is equipped with a continuous hydrothermal oxidation pilot plant. Other technologies are also present in order to offer a real clean technology platform for the treatment of sludge and effluents: supercriticalCO2 reactor, membrane bioreactor, electro-oxidation unit.

In addition to supporting municipalities, health institutions and businesses in their waste treatment efforts, the laboratory will generate significant economic benefits. It will actively participate in achieving provincial and federal objectives in terms of action against climate change and the transition to a circular economy. 

Michel Cantin, Vice-President, Development and Partnerships, Western Quebec, at Desjardins; Stéphanie Desmarais, Executive Director of the Cégep de Sorel-Tracy; Claude Maheux-Picard, Executive Director of the CTTÉI; Cécile Michoux, Chair of the Board of Directors of the CTTÉI and Senior Engineer, Climate Change at Cascades Jean-Bernard Émond, MNA for Richelieu, parliamentary assistant to the Minister of Education (vocational training) and representative of the Government of Quebec; Pierre Desgranges, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Cégep de Sorel-Tracy and General Manager of the Caisse Desjardins Pierre-de Saurel; Serge Péloquin, Mayor of Sorel-Tracy; and Louis Plamondon, Member of Parliament for Bécancour-Nicolet-Saurel. Photo credit: NathB


"The Canada Foundation for Innovation is pleased to support this new clean technology laboratory of the Centre de transfert technologique en écologie industrielle, which will make it possible to recycle or readapt unused industrial materials for the greater good of our environment. The affiliation of the CTTÉI with the Cégep de Sorel-Tracy is a guarantee of quality training that will benefit a new generation of researchers who will take full advantage of close collaboration between industry and applied research in the college environment .

- Roseann O'Reilly Runte, President and CEO of the Canada Foundation for Innovation

"College technology transfer centres are important links in the field of scientific research and innovation. The advances made in our college labs have the potential to make a lasting difference. This new lab at the CTTÉI promises to make a huge difference in building a greener future for our planet. It is a compelling example of the importance of research to our society.

- Danielle McCann,QuebecMinister ofHigher Education

"I am proud to confirm $100,000 in support from the Great Movement Fund for the first pilot-scale hydrothermal oxidation laboratory in Canada. We salute the perseverance of the Industrial Ecology Technology Transfer Centre for its contribution to the transition to the circular economy, one of the levers to fight climate change."

- Michel Cantin, Vice-President, Development and Partnerships, Western Quebec at Desjardins

About the CTTÉI

Since 1999, the Centre de transfert technologique en écologie industrielle has been developing and sharing its unparalleled expertise in waste management. It increases the performance of businesses and communities through research and development of innovative approaches and technologies in industrial ecology. The CTTÉI is affiliated with the Cégep de Sorel-Tracy.