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October 24, 2016

Primary and Secondary Clarifiers

This page provides information on the expected performance of primary and secondary clarifiers. Removal efficiencies, detention times, and other parameters have been summarized to provide a handy reference. Of course, every wastewater plant is different, with potentially vast differences between municip...

October 21, 2016

Oil-Water Separation

Though municipal wastewater treatment plants have to deal with their share of oil and grease (O&G), this page on oil-water separation really applies more to industrial wastewater systems, particularly those associated with petrochemical plants.

There are several variables that can significantly influence the perform...

October 11, 2016

Using the Crown Press: A Nice Story in Pictures

I want to give you fair warning: This page goes on forever and ever!! But it's only because there are a lot of photographs. So let's begin this long journey as I guide through the use of the benchtop Crown Press. 

The series of photographs that follow provide a step-by-step...

October 10, 2016

Benchtop Belt Filter Press

As I've discussed elsewhere in this blog, I have two key pieces of laboratory/field equipment that I use to evaluate a wastewater treatment system: 1. Oxygen uptake rate (OUR) and 2. Adenosine triphosphate (ATP) testing. And as great as these tests are, their focus is specifically on the evaluation of the bio...

October 9, 2016

Three Sludge Dewatering Units

The data presented on this page comes primarily from two sources as follows:

1. An excellent textbook entitled "Wastewater Sludge Processing." The complete reference for this textbook is: Turovskiy, Izrail S. and P.K. Mathai. "Wastewater Sludge Processing." Hoboken, New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons, Inc. 2006.


October 9, 2016

The Water We Use

As I travel from one place to another I seldom give much thought to the water I drink, cook with, and bathe in. But there are occasions when something seems a little "off" with the water. Sometimes it's the taste, a hint of hydrogen sulfide, which makes for a very bad cup of coffee, or perhaps the water just seems to b...

October 8, 2016

pH and Alkalinity Relationships

The following two graphics are intended to provide a handy reference describing pH and alkalinity relationships. Clicking on either of the images will open up a high quality PDF file that you can download and print. The source of this information is the excellent textbook from Nalco with the full referen...

October 1, 2016

Some Frustrations!

I travel from one water or wastewater treatment plant to another, week after week, happily (usually) doing my job. And the primary issue is always the same: Laboratory Space!!

There never seems to be enough of this critical space for the full time employees so there certainly isn't going to be any extra lab...

September 29, 2016

Informative EPA Fact Sheets

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) does an excellent job of assembling and posting relatively short, highly informative, readable, technical documents they refer to as Technology Fact Sheets.

As I come across these documents I'll post them here. They are PDF files that quickly get to the...

September 29, 2016

Wastewater Standards

These well-known and reliable wastewater standards have changed slowly over the years, getting updates as needed to stay current, while continuing to maintain a clear, user-friendly, technical presentation of key wastewater guidelines.

You can download this handy reference document as a PDF file here.

September 28, 2016

Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP) Testing

ATP testing is an advanced analysis for thoroughly evaluating a biological treatment system. Because this testing is not commonplace there is a lot about this analysis that is poorly understood. In this section the key terms used in ATP testing are defined.

Key ATP Terms

ATP (adenosine triphospha...

September 26, 2016

Wastewater Temperature in the Bioreactor

Operators know that when the temperature of the wastewater entering the bioreactor is too high, it can have an adverse impact on the microorganisms in the activated sludge system. How high a temperature is too high? There are many opinions on this subject so I thought I would combine my own expe...

September 5, 2016

Activated Sludge Design Parameters

This is a handy chart from the well-known Metcalf & Eddy handbook (Metcalf & Eddy. Wastewater Engineering: Treatment and Reuse. 4th ed. Boston: McGraw-Hill, 2003).

Clicking on the image will open up a PDF version of the chart for printing or to give you a larger view.

August 10, 2016

Much to My Dismay!

I am a strong advocate for the use and value of oxygen uptake rate (OUR) testing. I find this simple procedure to be so insightful when it comes to evaluating a biological treatment system. What always surprises me as I travel throughout the United States, as well as internationally, is how seldom OUR testing is perf...

July 3, 2016

Join the IWA

The International Water Association (IWA) is a water/wastewater organization I highly recommend you join. As a member you have access to a wide range of excellent textbooks at discounted pricing. I've purchased many books from the IWA. In addition, they have numerous technical publications/magazines that you get online acc...

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