Climate-Resilient, Water-Efficient, and Self-Sustainable Agri-Food Systems


Due to climate change, the agri-food system is increasingly exposed to risks contributing to food and nutrition insecurity. Climate-resilient, water-efficient and self-sustainable agri-food systems are the only viable approach for the future. Locally sourced fertilizers and closed-loop hydroponic farming systems are attractive solutions for several reasons: reuse (and reduction) of water resources, use of natural and optimized fertilizers, and controlled , more predictable and improved food security, unrelated to climate change. Indoor and outdoor hydroponic systems, while efficient technologies, still require  fertilizers.


The LIFE project, created by the FNR under the coordination of Green ERA-Hub, aims to transform traditional agricultural waste (i.e. animal manure) into sanitary, rich, organic, water-soluble nutrient solutions by using novel bacterial and/or chemical transformation technologies, and process automation. Furthermore, these nutrient solutions will be used immediately in an on-site closed-loop hydroponic farm that will grow regionally important crops, in order to prove their efficacy.

Given that fertilizers produced from animal manure may entail risks, and may have an unstable nutrient concentration, the project will leverage on the Digital Twin (DT) technologies to control both the transformation process and crop evolution on the hydroponic farms. Thanks to DT virtual representation and the models simulating the behaviours of the physical entities, it will be possible to enhance fertilizer efficiency and maximize the crop yield, while reducing the use of conventional fertilizers and natural resources, like water.

The technical and commercial feasibility of the proposed approach will be demonstrated on a Pilot farm, integrating the manure transformation process, the diversified hydroponic farm and the rainwater capture system. The deployment includes a set of sensors and actuators, to monitor and control the system, thanks to the support of the Digital Twin tool and services. The Pilot Farm will be designed and implemented with the support of Fësch Haff SARL, in Luxembourg.


LIFE actively contributes to the enhancement offertilizer efficiency, by adopting advanced methods for fertilizer production. At the core of the project approach is the transformation of the animal manure into liquid fertilizers for hydroponic systems.

Overall, LIFE aims to make a transformative shift towards a sustainable and interconnected agriculture system, with 5 major impacts anticipated: 1. Enhance fertilizer efficiency and reduce chemical fertilizer use through upcycling of manure; 2. Increase natural resources usage through rainwater capture; 3. Integrate decision support systems in the Agri-Food system; 4. Validate the circular economy in the Agri-Food system; 5. Contribute to sustainable development goals (SDG2, SDG6, SDG12, SDG7, SDG9).


Domaines de recherche
  • Environnement

Partager cette page :


Envoyer un e-mail