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Digital Twin of
Mar Menor

Mar Menor is Europe's largest salt water lagoon and is facing serious environmental degradation. It is situated in one of Europe's most important watersheds for horticulture, while also being a hotspot for tourism. It is the center for a large innovation project funded by the European Union called SMARTLAGOON, which seeks to build a digital twin of the lagoon.

  • Project type: Digital Twin and R&D

  • Place: Murcia, Spain

  • Partners: UCAM, UPV, NIVA, Vielca, Upsala University, Bologna University

  • Funder: EU Horizon 2020 Pathfinder


Due to the intensively farmed watershed and the highly urbanized shorelines, the water quality of Mar Menor has degraded during the past decades. Today, periods of anoxia followed by massive fish kills are common, causing desolation of the local communities as well as the tourism sector.


Together with partners in the SMARTLAGOON project, a SWAT+ model is applied for the watershed, and GOTM-WET for the lagoon itself. In addition, an IoT based sensor system is installed in the center of the lagoon. Models and sensor data are implemented and coupled with the ASAP Platform by WaterWebTools, which effectively comprise an integrated digital twin for the lagoon and its watershed and enable 9-day forecasting of its water quality. The ability to assimilate sensor data in real-time into the model forecast was developed in the project, thereby improving the skill of the forecasts.



Forecasts of the water quality in Mar Menor, and particular the risk of anoxia, can inform local authorities, and help them prepare and communicate in relation to periods of potential fish kills. The forecast system also helps raise public awareness of this unique system, and what is driving its water quality.

Want to know more?

Contact project lead Dr. Dennis Trolle to learn more about the project or learn how we may be able to assist you.

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Dennis Trolle, Ph.D.

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