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Membrane bioreactor systems are an emerging advanced wastewater treatment technology that has been successfully applied at a variety of relatively small plants. Based on recent testing and design of membrane bioreactor facilities, the cost of membrane systems is becoming more affordable, membrane equipment is becoming more reliable, and the performance of membrane bioreactor systems is becoming better understood. Information about membrane systems, their performance and cost, however, is limited and not readily available to those who have not yet investigated or designed such facilities. It is the purpose of this paper to present a practical understanding of the design and evolution of membrane bioreactor systems. That understanding will be based on testing, design, and operational experience with membrane bioreactor systems at a variety of locations. The authors have gained these common understandings by working together at plants in Canada and the United States.

The paper will address a variety of information about membrane bioreactor systems, including performance, process implications, equipment, and costs. Specific applications will be discussed, including the use of chemicals for phosphorus removal, and the use of aerobic and anoxic zones for ammonia and nitrogen removal.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: January 1, 2000

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  • Proceedings of the Water Environment Federation is an archive of papers published in the proceedings of the annual Water Environment Federation® Technical Exhibition and Conference (WEFTEC® ) and specialty conferences held since the year 2000. These proceedings are not peer reviewed.

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