Nireas-IWRC At A Glance
Nireas-IWRC At A Glance

In today’s environment, society, individuals and organizations are confronted with ever increasing demands for water quantity and quality, with the demands raising profound questions regarding the society’s ability to synthesize efficient solutions to these rapidly proliferating problems. Nireas-IWRC intends to help counter this trend through the creation of a “home” for water-related research, and take bold steps for the creation and hosting of an internationally-recognized research institute for the advancement of water-related research. Consequently, Nireas-IWRC will ultimately offer a platform not just for more effective technologies, but also for an entirely new generation of functionality for sustainable management of water resources, harnessing the synergies of integrated interdisciplinary research on water quality, quantity, and management through a single knowledge repository. Nireas-IWRC will generate a responsive environment for technology-enhanced research to motivate, engage and inspire citizens, and one that will be embedded directly in the social web.

Nireas-IWRC is in line with the flagship initiatives of ESF’s i2010 research agenda, driven by socio-economic goals and sustainable environmental management. Nireas-IWRC’s target is a single information space for water resources in Cyprus, with the promise for excellence and the potential of international scientific recognition, in which environmental institutions, service providers and citizens can collaborate on water-related research or share available information without technical restraints. The activities aim at dependable, flexible and user-centric shared solutions for sustainable use of water resources and for better management of ecosystems including the mitigation of environmental degradation and associated threats. Research is expected to deliver visionary concepts and techniques, and strategic integrated approaches addressing water-related applications that are cost-effective, easy to set up and to operate. The focus is on generic systems and solutions that will integrate to a large extent new scientific paradigms and socioeconomic driving forces, autonomous/adaptive sensor networks, extended data fusion, rapid and secure access to distributed information, modeling, simulation and visualization as well as decision-making frameworks.
 

Nireas-IWRC substantially contributes to each of these goals directly by accessing and enabling Europe’s water-related research inventories and by advancing

(1) the creation of integrated decision-making frameworks for sustainable management of water resources (water resources management, and urban water distribution networks),

(2) the integration of environmental monitoring and management (including treatment, quality monitoring, water losses, dam evaporation, dredged material sedimentation in dams, water recharge) with an enhanced capacity to assess population exposure and health risks,

(3) consideration and evaluation of non-conventional water resources (“grey water”, desalination, etc),

(4) socioeconomic analyses of water-related strategies,

(5) reporting to and alerting the various stakeholder groups in relation to water research and implementation policies,

(6) organizing efficient response to problems resulting from the ever-increasing water scarcity issues.

 

The activities of Nireas-IWRC include interdisciplinary research aiming at the solution of complex scientific and engineering problems under the unifying theme of water management. The goal is to develop further expertise that will enable an integrated approach to this important issue, coupling chemistry, biology, hydrology, geohydrology, hydraulics, advanced modeling capabilities and experimental/analytical work, computational mechanics, risk assessment, environmental science and education, economics and of course various specialties of engineering in order to face various emerging problems in this field. The implementation of the various projects that will stem from the Institute will spearhead research at a pioneering level internationally. The projects of Nireas-IWRC are true inter-sectorial, effectively linked and integrated since the working schedule is structured so that various members are involved in several inter-related projects and activities. Each of the research pillars and tasks described in the research methodology promotes competence and practical skills in various disciplines within the thematic area of water management. The overarching aim of Nireas-IWRC is to integrate and leverage this interdisciplinary research for the solution of complex scientific and engineering problems. Although distinct, the pillars have commonalities both in the scientific content and the industrial and real life scale applications. Leaders are assigned to each pillar and later on, during the implementation of the various tasks, members of the Nireas-IWRC also acts as leader of each specific project that will evolve. Regular meetings are scheduled in order for the members to be able to discuss the various issues and problems related to their work in order to deal with these through an integrated and multifaceted approach. Nireas-IWRC’s Board of Directors approves each specific project and roles have been assigned with aim to utilize all available experience and expertise.
 

Nireas-IWRC focuses on 3 research pillars,

(1) Water quality, monitoring and treatment,

(2) Water supply and urban water management,

(3) Socioeconomic analysis for water-related issues.

 

Additionally, one pillar (4) is devoted to Human Resource Development and, last but not least, one pillar (5) relates to Dissemination activities. 

Furthermore NIREAS-IWRC’s major research areas are:

  • Advanced chemical water treatment
  • Advanced wastewater treatment through hybrid processes
  • Development and use of porous materials in water treatment applications
  • Characterization of properties of particles in waters and identification of organics adsorbed on solid surfaces
  • Environmental chemical analysis for water quality
  • Water pollutants impact assessment
  • Water resource evaluation
  • Groundwater resources
  • Protection of groundwater resources
  • Groundwater recharge
  • Development of mitigation techniques for evaporative loss from fresh water reservoirs
  • Reservoir sedimentation monitoring and management
  • Surface reservoir integrity
  • Water supply and urban water management
  • Automatic meter reading and ad-hoc wireless sensor networks for leak detection
  • Numerical modeling, prediction and monitoring of salt-water intrusion on coastal aquifers
  • Socioeconomic analysis for water-related issues