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OPTIMIZATION OF ACTIVATED SLUDGE DIFFUSION FOR HYDROGEN SULFIDE AND VOLATILE ORGANIC COMPOUNDS REMOVAL

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A combination of design configurations (tall vs. short aeration tanks and coarse vs. fine air diffusion) was tested at pilot scale for optimum H2S removal by activated sludge diffusion (ASD).The effects of H2S diffusion on the wastewater treatment performance, in terms of biological oxygen demand(BOD), chemical oxygen demand (COD), suspended solids (SS) and ammonia (NH3) removal, were also evaluated, in eight four-week trials. The results showed that although all combinations of configurations gave 85 – 100% removal of up to 25 ppmv H2S, a combination of fine bubble diffusers in tal or short tanks gave the best results with regard to H2S removal (94 and 99%, respectively). This suggests that aeration tank height has no impact on H2S removal when using fine bubble diffusers. However, tank height was important in the configurations with coarse bubble diffusers, with 85% removal being obtained for a short tank and 99% for a tall tank configuration. The configuration with fine bubble diffusers in short tanks gave best treatment performance (75, 72 and 80% mean removal rates for BOD, COD and NH3, respectively, at the highest dosing period, compared with 72, 71 and 68% for the control). A brief suspension in nitrification was observed soon after commencement of ASD of H2S in the configuration with fine bubble diffusers in tall tanks and that with coarse bubble diffusers in short tanks. The configuration with fine bubble diffusers in short tanks also gave the best mixed liquor suspended solids (MLSS) maintenance and was therefore chosen for further studies to investigate removal of H2S peaks of up to 150 ppmv. These studies showed no effects of H2S diffusion on the wastewater treatment performance, when the plant was fully stabilized and the microbial biomass was well acclimated.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2004-01-01

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