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Integrative technology for assessment and enhancement of complete removal of chlorinated ethenes from groundwater (TECHTOOL)

FUNDED BY: Technology Agency of the Czech Republic
RECIPIENT: Institute of Microbiology of the CAS, v. v. i.
  École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne - Switzerland
  EPS s.r.o.
  KHSanace s.r.o.
  Technical University of Liberec
PROJECT MANAGER: RNDr. Maria Brennerová, CSc.
for VODNÍ  ZDROJE a.s.: Mgr. Pavlína Hlaváčová
PROJECT DURATION: April 2012 – December 2015


The project focuses on designing, testing and verification of a technology for assessment and enhancement of complete removal of chlorinated ethenes from groundwater. Other research outputs of potentially wide application include a new molecular biology method for the study of reductive dehalogenation of chlorinated ethenes during remediation as well as a multidisciplinary evaluation table listing the crucial parameters and their values, enabling to determine whether the required transformation of chlorinated ethenes is compromised by stagnation and accumulation of cis-DCE and VC. This table has the potential to become a simple practical tool not only for remediation companies bur also for supervisory and state administration bodies evaluating the remediation efficiency.

 Project activities performed in 2012:

  • Development of a unified methodology for the characterisation of sites contaminated with chlorinated ethens
  • Selection of hydrochemical and biological parameters to be long-term monitored for optimal evaluation of changes which take place at the site during remediation
  • Unified methodology for groundwater sampling for chemical, microbiological and molecular analyses; methodology of soil sampling and on-site measurement
  • For the sampling of biological materials from groundwater, a methodology for the use of stationary samplers with nanofiber carriers was developed in addition to classic sampling techniques
  • Start of groundwater sampling at selected sites using the methodology developed

For the TECHTOOL project, 7 sites contaminated with chlorinated ethens were selected: Karosa – gas storage facility, Karosa – Tomáškova cihelna, Velamos, Františkovy Lázně, Spolchemie, Jablůnkov, and the former OZ CHEMIE Horní Počernice – site remediated by VODNÍ ZDROJE.

Project activities performed in 2013:

  • Groundwater monitoring at selected sites – following the 2012 monitoring
  • Testing of the adaptability of biological materials during sampling and during the transport of nanocarrier samples from site to laboratory
  • Testing of the methodology for groundwater sampling to determine the Fe2+ a Mn2+ concentrations – problems with groundwater with high iron concentrations
  • Anaerobic cultivation of microbial communities from groundwater samples taken from the monitored hydrogeological environments
  • Statistical analysis of multivariable ecological parameters
  • Project team workshop focusing on the remediation criteria and methods for the monitoring end effective management of on-site reductive dehalogenation of chlorinated ethens


Lokalita OZ CHEMIE Horní Počernice – monitoring domovní studny On-site measurement of the parameters in a flow chamber
On-site measurement in a flow chamber Protection of samplers in the sampled water during monitoring


Project activities performed in 2014:

  • Ongoing groundwater monitoring at the Techtool project test sites including PCR analysis and anaerobic cultivation, completion of a unified database
  • Designing a technology for complete removal of chlorinated ethens based on the information provided by the comprehensive study
  • Selection of an appropriate CE site for pilot testing, proposal and launch of the pilot test of the technology
  • Organisation of a thematic workshop as part of the Czech-Swiss biotechnological conference BioTech 2014 - Workshop: „Biotechnology for controlled remediation of sites contaminated with chlorinated ethenes: Czech - Swiss teamwork joins research with practice“. The Techtool project was presented with posters and papers in English


Project activities performed in 2015:

  • Completion of the groundwater monitoring activities at the Techtool project test sites
  • Final evaluation of tests determining the Fe2+ concentrations in groundwater – monitoring of Fe concentrations is important for the evaluation of the remediation done by the ERD method. However, the determination itself is quite problematic. Therefore a suitable methodology was suggested.
  • Completion of the pilot testing activities of the technology for complete removal of chlorinated ethens on the test site Karosa – Degreasing facility
  • Final evaluation of the technological methods used in pilot testing, statistical evaluation of the results obtained
  • Creation of a multicriterial table of the key parameters of the geological environment for the monitoring of the process of reductive dehalogenation of chlorinated ethens
  • Development of the optimal technological process for the complete transformation of CE into final non-toxic products based on the results of the entire project (geological, hydrochemical, chemical, microbiological, molecular-genetic, and statistical analyses as well as the performed pilot testing); the technology was successfully tested on the test site Karosa – Degreasing facility



  • V001 – Thematic workshop as part of the conference „BioTech 2014“
  • V002 – Development of a new molecular biology method for the study of biological reductive dehalogenation during remediation
  • V003 – Active participation in the conference Aqua ConSoil 2015
  • V004 – Database of analytical information concerning the pilot sites
  • V005 – Fermentometer – utility model
  • V006 – Active participation in scientific conferences and publications in professional journals
  • V007 – Technology for assessment and enhancement of complete removal of chlorinated ethens from groundwater


The key result of the Techtool project is a verified technology for complete removal of CE from groundwater. The Techtool technology has identified critical points in the ERD process and gives detailed instructions for the proper conduct of on-site measurements and environmental sampling in order to obtain relevant information for achieving the optimal ERD process management. The technology recommends, to a reasonable extent, practical application of the methods of molecular biology and statistical analysis even to well-informed laypeople. The technology further includes a detailed narrative description of each step as well as a graphical representation in the form of a flow chart. In addition, it contains a multicriterial table comprehensible even for laypeople that can be used for a quick insight in evaluating the state of transformation of ethens at a given site. The quality of the result has been successfully confirmed at the verification site and demonstrated by achieving the remediation limits at each of the monitored wells.


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