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Prototype at Britannia lodge in Switzerland

The Britannia lodge is with its almost 150 beds, one of the largest high mountain lodges of the Alps. Today the waste from the dry latrines is collected in bins and flown by helicopter to the valley below. The SANBOX project  will test a new solution that is providing more comfort to the guests and reducies helicopter transport, local emissions  and thus, the environmental foot print of the waste handling system.

Greater sanitary comfort

The dry latrines will be replaced with modern and comfortable Jets™ vacuum toilets. This technology has been proven under challenging conditions on cruise ships, buses and trains. Jets™ vacuum toilets need only 0.8 liter water per flush and can therefore be supplied with water from kitchen and washing facilities that has been recycled in a biofilter.

Utilizing high-level solar radiation

The wastewater from the toilets is treated in a box, attached to the south face of the lodge. The design of the box is based on greenhouse technology provided by GYSI of Switzerland. The greenhouse enables the utilization of the strong solar radiation available at this high altitude and will provide sufficient heat energy to the biological processes of the treatment ayatem. Solar radiation will also be used to evaporate most of the wastewater stream so that the system is will be near the vision of zero effluent. The solid residues of this new system will be a fraction of the old system.

On-site opportunitites

The remaining solid residues will be in the form of a hygienized compost that can be reused as fertilizer for local agricultural production. To reuse the nutrients in the wastewater for onsite production of vegetables is a second vision of SANBOX in the Alps.



July 2009 - April 2010

Developing of technology at the different SANBOX partners

May 2010 - June 2010

Installation and initial test

July 2010 - October 2010

Test and monitoring under summer conditions

February 2011 - April 2011

Test and monitoring under winter conditions


Components foreseen for prototype and partners involved in its development:


Involved partners

Biofilter for greywater recycling
(wastewater from kitchen and washing facilities)

Sia Norplast, Latvia
University of Tartu, Estonia

Vacuum toilet system

Jets AS, Norway

Solar heated systems box

Gysi + Berglas AG, Switzerland
Norwegian Univeristy of Life Sciences (UMB), Norway
Technologie Transfer Zentrum Bremerhaven (TTZ), Germany

Blackwater (wastewater from toilets) filter

Jets AS, Norway
Norwegian Univeristy of Life Sciences (UMB), Norway

Solar evaporation system

Gysi + Berglas AG, Switzerland
Seecon GmbH, Switzerland
Technologie Transfer Zentrum Bremerhaven (TTZ), Germany

Composting system for solid residues

Seecon GmbH, Switzerland
Norwegian Univeristy of Life Sciences, (UMB) Norway

Greenhouse post composting module for
reuse of nutrient in onsite plant production

Gysi + Berglas AG, Switzerland
Seecon GmbH, Switzerland
Norwegian Univeristy of Life Sciences (UMB), Norway


Flow chart for the planned prototype at Britannia Lodge © 2011