The partnership is supported by 3 academic research teams from Aix-Marseille Université (AMU), the École Nationale Supérieure de Chimie de Rennes (ENSCR) and the Institut Mines Télécom Atlantique (IMTA –GEPEA laboratory); the Institut Français pour l’Exploitation de la Mer (Ifremer); two commercial hatcheries : Vendée Naissain and Novostrea.

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Aix-Marseille Université

The Membrane Processes Team (EPM) of the Laboratory of Mechanics, Modelling and Clean Processes (LM2P2- UMR 7340) will be mobilized through its manager Philippe Moulin, Full Professor, and Mathias Monnot, Associate Professor, head of the Process Intensification axis. The EPM has structured its research axes as follows: (i) Membrane Bioreactor, (ii) Membrane Characterization and Drinking Water, (iii) Transport Properties and Metrology (iv) Process Integration and Effluent Treatment (v) Process Industrialization and CFD (vi) Green Chemistry and (vii) Process Intensification. Due to a platform of about thirty pilot plants that can handle between a few liters per hour to 250 m³.d and after consolidating its research activities during the last few years, the EPM has sought to focus on inter-axis research activities and to accentuate the transfer of technology to industrial partners. From an application point of view, two new fields have been opened since 2012: the nuclear and the marine fields.

As part of this project, AMU will ensure the scientific and financial coordination of the project between the teams involved but also with the European Maritime Fisheries and Aquaculture Fund (WP1). He will be the coordinator for the development of the coupled processes (WP3) and will assist IFREMER in technology transfer (WP5). The membrane process pilot plants’ platform will be made available as well as analytical equipment necessary to assess the process performances.

Philippe Moulin

Full Professor and head of the Membrane Processes Team (EPM)

Mathias Monnot

Associate Professor and head of the Process Intensification axis in the EPM team

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The Marine Molluscs Experimental Platform of Bouin (PMMB) is positioned on the oyster polder of Bouin (Vendée (85), France). This experimental site is therefore positioned in the middle of a major shellfish aquaculture area and represents an ideal site for carrying out projects related to the quality of seawater. Indeed, like all French shellfish aquaculture, the polder de Bouin is itself concerned by the problems described above, making it a sector representative of the French shellfish aquaculture situation. The Ifremer experimental facilities in Bouin make it possible to carry out R&D activities in connection with securing shellfish production in a changing environmental context (climate, chemical and physical biological pollution). The quality of the seawater supplied to shellfish farms (hatcheries, nurseries, storage basins, etc.) can lead to major production losses.

It is necessary to control the quality of the water entering these structures to secure the farms. Since Crassostrea gigas hollow oyster mortalities in 2008, upstream water management is characterized by disinfection operations in addition to the physical treatments already implemented for several decades. The PMMB, because of its interest in providing adequate water quality for the various projects carried out there, specializes in the development of techniques to inactivate problematic shellfish pathogens and to eliminate any other harmful contamination for shellfish farms. The projects developed must make it possible to understand the phenomena involved in water treatment. Indeed, beyond the intended effect in terms of disinfection or removal of chemical contaminants, the treatment of seawater may have other impacts on the quality of the treated water depending on the type of process used, physical or chemical. For this project, these two technical teams will contribute particularly during WP4 to study the couplings of processes under controlled conditions and on experimental farms.

On the PMMB, the study of semi-industrial scale couplings will be carried out due to the on-site expertise in the field of environmental process engineering and in particular the treatment of seawater in aquaculture. An engineer/manager of the platform will manage and coordinate the trials with a view to an application on experimental farms with first tests that can be carried out on hollow oyster fertilizations and forage micro-algae crops. It will rely on a biologist technician capable of carrying out all the analytical follow-ups, a technician specialized in marine molluscs experimentation for the realization of pre-tests on farms and a technician in phytotechnics for microalgae crops. Once this first step has been successfully completed, larval breeding for the three species of bivalves can be carried out on another Marine Molluscs Experimental Platform, which has the facilities and skills required to carry out multiple operations. For several species, this will involve a confirmed aquaculture engineer accompanied by a specialist in shellfish farming. To do this, the water treatment pilots can be transferred to this platform before returning to the PMMB with the micro-spat in order to follow the evolution of the spat over several months. More confidential larval farms may also be carried out on the PMMB in order to validate the water quality provided by the process couplings and whatever the initial water quality.

Christophe Stravakakis

Director of SG2M unit (mollusc health, genetics and microbiology unit)

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IMT Atlantique-GEPEA

The GEnie Laboratory for Environmental – Agri-Food Processes (GEPEA) is a joint research unit with 4 control institutions: CNRS, IMT Atlantique, ONIRIS and the University of Nantes. The GEPEA develops processes implementing flow, transfer, separation, reaction applied to the agri-food, energy, environment and valorization of products and substances of marine origin. The unit is composed of 5 research teams including the TEAM (Water Treatment Air Metrology) team which is led by Valérie Héquet and Gérald Thouand.

The work developed by the TEAM team focuses on separation processes with transfer and reaction applied to water and air treatments. These processes are deployed according to the specific properties of the identified target pollutants. These targets are multiple and are found in complex and multi-compound aqueous or gaseous matrices. The team’s approach is to provide tailored responses to the problems encountered by optimizing, intensifying, coupling processes or integrating performance monitoring via sensors. In this project, GEPEA at IMT Atlantique will provide complementary expertise in the field of adsorption by conducting characterization studies of several adsorbent materials. It will be necessary to carry out a phase of testing of several adsorbents under laboratory conditions in order to determine the most appropriate materials for the implementation of this process in seawater. Kinetics and adsorption capacities will be determined to select the best adsorbents for the intended application. The identification of photolysis by-products and the understanding of the adsorption mechanisms of organic micropollutants in the seawater matrix will also be carried out (WP2). In the WP4, the IMT Atlantique will work on comparing the tests of coupling ultrafiltration and adsorption on granular activated carbon ; UV treatment alone and coupling UV and activated carbon adsorption.

Valérie Héquet

Full Professor in Process Engineering, GEPEA laboratory, team TEAM

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The Chemistry and Process Engineering (CIP) team at the Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Chimie de Rennes (ENSCR) studies and develops sustainable processes for the treatment of pollution, as well as for production in key environmental fields, food processing and chemistry. Member of the Institut des Sciences Chimiques de Rennes (UMR-6226), the team is also developing analytical methodologies for identifying and quantifying trace pollutants and characterizing interfaces to determine the performance of these processes.

Combining experimental approach and modelling, our physicochemical approach to transport phenomena and phenomena and reactions to interfaces addresses a key point in the understanding of processes and processes. This research involves fine-grained experimentation in both pilot units and physico-chemistry (characterization of solutes in relation to the physico-chemical environment, trace analysis of micropollution, identification of short-lived chemical species such as free radicals, in situ monitoring of biological activities, etc.), supplemented by numerical modelling and simulations at different scales. The CIP team regularly works with industrial or service companies, large groups, small compagnies on knowledge, modelling and water treatment process applications topics. The SOAP program fits completely into the topics developed by the team, both in terms of analytical equipment, experimental means and staff skills. Three teacher-researchers from the CIP team will be actively involved in this research project. Pierre Le Cloirec, Full Professor, is a specialist in adsorption processes for drinking water production and wastewater treatment. Similarly, Sylvain Giraudet and Nicolas Cimetière, lecturers, have extensively studied the adsorption of trace organic compounds by different adsorbent media. Analytical expertise will also be leveraged during this project with the implementation of a sampling, detection/quantification strategy for contaminants in marine waters.

Pierre Le Cloirec

Full Professor in Process Engineering at ENSCR

Dominique Wolbert

Full Professor in Process Engineering at ENSCR

Sylvain Giraudet

Associate Professor in Process Engineering at ENSCR

Nicolas Cimetière

Associate Professor in Process Engineering at ENSCR

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Vendée Naissain

France Naissain is part of the shellfish aquaculture sector and markets the selected hollow oyster spat, diploid and triploid, produced by Vendée Naissain, which benefits from a solid expertise in hollow oyster hatchery and nursery. Vendée Naissain and France Naissain were created by Stéphane Angeri in 1983.

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In 1994, the construction of the first oyster nursery as a multi-purpose breeding pilot in partnership with IFREMER and ANVAR led to the first production of triploid oyster spat in 2001. The company now has 12 nurseries. Based on selected spawners and following rigorous traceability, Vendée Naissain and France Naissain guarantee growth performance and optimal survival for resistant and quality oyster spat, «one by one», for all mesh bags, from T6 to half-rearing. Vendée Naissain is committed to quality by offering quality products and service: resistant oyster spat and personalized follow-up tailored to your needs.

It is in compliance with this quality approach that Vendée Naissain and France Naissain are certified ISO 9001. Located on the Polder des Champs between Bouin and Beauvoir sur mer, Vendée Naissain and France Naissain enjoy the benefits of this unique basin in France that represents the Baie de Bourgneuf. This particular site has an underground salt water table, at a constant temperature extremely rich in nutrients for phytoplankton. The marshes are numerous in this pure and preserved environment, and the climatic conditions, favorable to the breeding and the growth of the oyster.

France Naissain is the first French center for the production of pre-enlarged hatchery seed. It supplies nearly 70 to 75% of the French supply of hatchery spat, or a production exceeding one billion spat.

The Vendée Naissain hatchery based in Bouin (85) is a producer of Crassostrea gigas hollow oyster spat

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Novostréa Bretagne