Recovery of dredged Sediments of the PORT of Ravenna and SILicon extraction.

Unibo Team Leader: Prof. Vittorio Colombo and dott. Emanuele Ghedini, DIEM Department.

The SEDI.PORT.SIL. project has been conceived to demonstrate an integrated approach for the sustainable management of sediments dredged from ports.

It is intended to demonstrate the efficiency of consolidated treatment technologies coupled with innovative techniques aimed to the recycle and valorization of port dredged sediments, that can be considered an important resource rather than just a dangerous waste.

From a technical perspective, the project proposes an integrated cycle of actions to be applied to sediments (and associated water) right after the dredging, to reduce the environmental impact and maximize the percentage of material suitable for recycling. Decontaminated sediments could be suitable as raw material in the infrastructure and environmental engineering sectors. The use of polluted sediments for the extraction of metallurgic silicon is also be investigated. A pilot study is firstly undertaken for some sediment samples dredged from the Port of Ravenna, Italy. Afterwards we analyse the applicability of the process at regional level, and we evaluate the process repeatability in a different European context (port of Midia, Romania). The final goal is to develop a guidelines for treated sediment and raw materials reuse and to assess the feasibility and sustainability for the realization of a treatment plant at the Port of Ravenna.

Expected results


  • To demonstrate the efficiency of treatment processes applied to polluted sediment (soil washing) and associated water (pump&treat) on the sediment of the Port of Ravenna;
  • To demonstrate the efficiency and the productivity of the extraction of metallurgic silicon from polluted port sediments through a plasma treatment. This process is highly innovative because it has never been applied to polluted marine sediments;
  • To identify and plan best possible reuses of decontaminated sediment and extracted silicon;
  • To demonstrate the efficiency of a plasma torch for the decontamination of the finest fraction of dredged sediments (diameter 25÷150 µ);
  • To create a Business and a Master Plan to analyse the realization of a treatment plant at the Port of Ravenna;
  • To evaluate the repeatability of the process in a different geographical and administrative context in Europe;
  • To raise public awareness on sustainable development issues targeted by the project.




Associated Beneficiaries
Ferrara University
Bologna University
The Po Delta Park
CRSA MED Ingegneria

The Port of Ravenna Authority

Start date 01/09/2010

End date 31/08/2012 

Duration 24 months

Project cost 1.924.557 Euro 

Project Funding 931.192 Euro

Grant Contract N° LIFE 09ENV/IT/000158

Subprogramme AreaEnvironment Policy & Governance