Managed Aquifer Recharge (MAR): Science; Technology; and Applications Worldwide (1.19.21)


  • Guest 1: Dr. Joao-Paulo Lobo Ferreira, Principal Research Officer, Portugal National Civil Engineering Laboratory (LNEC).
  • Guest 2: Prof. Christoph Schüth (Germany), MARSOL and MARSoluT Projects Coordinator, Technology University of Darmstadt
  • Guest 3: Dr. Daniel Kurtzman (Israel), Agricultural Research Organization (ARO)
  • Guest 4: Prof. Xavier Sanchez-Vila, (Spain), Polytechnic University of Catalonia, (UPC)
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The world-wide EmeraldPlanet International Foundation® movement is linking millions of professionals and citizens around the globe through a practical community-by-community identification, evaluation, broadcasting, and promotions weekly television program and selected The Emerald Mini-Treks®.

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Our featured guests are:

  • Show 1: Dr. Joao-Paulo Lobo Ferreira, Principal Research Officer, Portugal National Civil Engineering Laboratory (LNEC), Theme: “Managed Aquifer Recharge (MAR) as a Solution for Climate Change and Water Stress”.
  • Show 2: Prof. Christoph Schüth (Germany), MARSOL and MARSoluT Projects Coordinator, Technology University of Darmstadt, Theme: “Quality Research on Managed Aquifer Recharge (MAR)”.
  • Show 3: Dr. Daniel Kurtzman (Israel), Agricultural Research Organization (ARO), Theme: “Managed Aquifer Recharge (MAR) Technology and Applications Demonstrations in Israel, Spain, and Latin America”.
  • Show 4: Prof. Xavier Sanchez-Vila, (Spain), Polytechnic University of Catalonia, (UPC), Theme: “Modelling for Managed Aquifer Recharge (MAR)”.

Program Overview:

LNEC is a public research institute dedicated to S&T, encompassing the various fields of civil engineering and related scientific areas. At present, LNEC has 500 employees, of which about 180 have a Ph.D. degree or equivalent.  Throughout its existence, LNEC has carried out advanced technological consultancy under contract in more than 40 countries. It houses over 20 testing and research laboratories, ten of which are accredited under the ISO standards. Its large three-degree-of-freedom Seismic Testing Platform is in the ESFRI roadmap and is accessed by researchers and used by LNEC to support international consultancy. Besides the training of its own researchers, LNEC accommodates every year a selection of MSc and Ph.D. students from other institutions, national and foreign, and has extensive activity in the dissemination of research results and in the transfer of knowledge to practitioners.

Its main scientific core on Civil Engineering is complemented by other engineering branches (Materials, Electronics, Mechanical, Computing) and by a large number of other contributing sciences, namely, Chemistry, Physics, Geology, Biology, as well as Architecture and Sociology. These joint capabilities allow the preparation and implementation of multidisciplinary approaches to complex problems, an emblematic character of the 70-year old Institution.

LNEC, at large, has participated in many international research and dissemination projects funded by the EU and other international funding agencies, with partners from all continents. Through the Heritage Sector, it is a founding member of the Portuguese Research Infrastructure on cultural heritage ( and participated in several important EU-funded research projects on the conservation of cultural heritage, including LabS-TECH, Eu-ARTECH, and Charisma. In its consultancy role, the sector has been regularly involved in conservation interventions carried out in some of the most meaningful and emblematic monuments of the built heritage of Portugal and is presently involved in the preparation of candidacy to the UNESCO List. This sector has also a long experience in knowledge dissemination through the organization of courses, seminars, and congresses within the broad scope of conservation of the Cultural Heritage.

 Since its foundation in 1877, TU Darmstadt has been characterized by a special pioneering spirit. It is part of our self-image to continuously continue this tradition of innovation. Through outstanding achievements in research, teaching, and transfer, we open up important scientific fields of the future and continually open up new opportunities for shaping society. This makes TU Darmstadt one of the leading technical universities in Germany with high international visibility and reputation.  While engineering and natural sciences are the main focus at TU Darmstadt, they cooperate closely with the prominent disciplines of humanities and social sciences. We bring these diverse academic cultures together in one distinctive profile which we continue to develop dynamically. We are renowned worldwide for our outstanding research in the highly relevant profile areas in which we specialise.

TU Darmstadt enters into partnerships on an equal footing with universities, research institutes, and companies both in Germany and abroad in order to combine the outstanding expertise offered by all partners for the pursuit of a common goal. Our intensive transfer of knowledge is a decisive driver of industry and innovative strength in the Frankfurt-Rhine-Main metropolitan region. Through strategic collaborations and close relationships with society, we promote this region as an internationally renowned research area. Our Innovation and Start-up Centre promotes the entrepreneurial culture and allows ideas to successfully mature into start-ups. And TU Darmstadt has always been firmly anchored and inextricably linked to the City of Science Darmstadt.

Just as our cutting edge research has received numerous awards in competitions, our teaching has also been recognized for its innovative approach. Degree courses at TU Darmstadt focus very heavily on research, while at the same time preparing students for the requirements expected of them in the workplace. Our students become creative, discerning, and open-minded as they complete their studies within a highly international network. In this way, we give them the qualifications they require for taking on demanding roles in the worlds of academia and business. A degree obtained at TU Darmstadt is a sign of quality and opens up ideal career opportunities. Our graduates are held in high esteem by companies.

 The Agricultural Research Organization, Volcani Center, previously known as the Agricultural Research Station of the Jewish Agency for Palestine, is an Israeli agricultural research center. It serves as the research arm of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development of the State of Israel and provides research opportunities for local and international scientists at post-graduate levels, as well as educational opportunities for Israeli and international youths, farmers, and scientists. The organization supports Israeli agriculture research, focusing on plant sciences, animal sciences, plant protection, soil and environmental sciences, food sciences, and agricultural engineering. The organization was founded in 1921 in Ben Shemen, Israel, by Yitzhak Elazari Volcani, for whom it is named.  

 The Agricultural Research Organization (ARO) has six institutes at three regional campuses (Rishon LeZion, Newe Ya’ar, and Gilat). The institutes include Plant Sciences, Animal Sciences, Plant Protection, Soil, Water, and Environmental Sciences, Postharvest and Food Sciences, and Agricultural Engineering. There is a seed laboratory for testing seed quality for local use and for export, and a plant gene bank to collect, preserve, and evaluate plant species indigenous to Israel, including landraces and primitive cultivars. Kidum, a unit of the ARO, manages the commercialization of the organization’s intellectual property, technology transfer, and the establishment of partnerships, joint ventures, and business enterprises. 

Gilat Center for Arid and Semi-Arid Agricultural Research: In 2015, the ARO inaugurated the Gilat Center for Arid and Semi-Arid Agricultural Research, the focus of which is developing solutions for immediate and future crises such as climate change, water quality and availability, desertification, and soil degradation. Center of Excellence for Agro-nanotechnology: This multidisciplinary center, started in 2017, aims to address challenges in the field of food and agriculture through the development and implementation of advanced materials and nanotechnologies, such as edible coatings to prolong storability and enhance food quality, advanced delivery systems for active agents for plant and food protection, nanostructured optical biosensors, and contact-active antimicrobial materials to prevent food-cross contamination and biofilm formation. Sustainable Model Farm: In 2018, a model farm at the Newe Ya’ar regional campus, aiming to test, develop and demonstrate sustainable agriculture practices, was inaugurated. The model farm’s main principles are minimum external inputs, zero waste, soil conservation, animal welfare, and coexistence of human and natural ecosystems along with profitability.

Polytechnic University of Catalonia (UPC), sometimes referred to as BarcelonaTech, is an outstanding engineering school in Catalonia in Spain. The school was founded in 1971 as the Universitat Politècnica de Barcelona. It now has several campuses. Even though it is particularly known for its excellent engineering programs, the school also offers programs in other fields, such as mathematics and architecture. 30,864 students are currently enrolled in degree programs. The university has excellent teaching and research staff- 3,066 people are working on campus. The school has a wide range of degree options, 65 different bachelor’s, 73 master’s, as well as 49 doctoral programs. UPC has 21 schools and 205 research groups. Graduates are skilled with the necessary skills to become successful in their chosen fields of expertise. 

The alumni network is large- 54,440 registered alumni are living and working in Spain and abroad. The school places special value on internationalization- it is one of the few technical universities in Europe with the most international Ph.D. students, in addition to being the university with the largest share of international undergraduate and master students. Polytechnic University of Catalonia offers a multicultural learning environment. The university also holds several signed agreements with top-ranked European universities, in order to make sure that its students are able to gain a truly global outlook. 

UPC strives to be the top school that provides its students with the highest degree of engineering and technical excellence. The university is a member of the Top Industrial Managers for Europe network, proving again how serious it is about internationalization. This membership allows students to go on exchanges between leading European engineering schools. It is also part of various university federations, such as the Conference of European Schools for Advanced Engineering Education and Research (CESAER), as well as UNITECH.

Thank You Production Crew and Program Team for your commitment, dedication, and goodwill as we continue to expand our “best practices” solutions identification and reporting in our second decade. We would like to acknowledge that equipment and facilities are provided by Fairfax Public Access, Fairfax, Virginia. We thank our many viewers, supporters, and the general public for weekly feedback, ideas, and suggestions as together we create The EmeraldPlanet®…Dr. Sam Hancock, Executive Producer, Creator & Host, The EmeraldPlanet TV®