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Membrane Pilot Testing at the Sacramento Regional Wastewater Treatment Plant

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Side-by-side operation of four membrane pilot tertiary treatment systems was conducted at the Sacramento Regional Wastewater Treatment Plant (SRWTP) from May through November of 2005. Pilot units were supplied with secondary effluent from the SRWTP. A pretreatment pilot unit was operated in front of the membranes during the last two months of the test program to determine if pretreatment could significantly enhance membrane performance.

Performance objectives for the testing included:

Meet California Title 22 turbidity standards for reclaimed water

Do not exceed vendor guidelines for operating trans-membrane pressure (TMP)

Operate at least 30 continuous days between membrane chemical cleaning cycles

Operate at least 24 hours between maintenance cleaning cycles

With the secondary effluent feed water, all four membrane vendors met the minimum requirement for 30 days of continuous operation at a constant flux. Proven flux rates varied significantly. In general, membrane effluent quality was very good, with effluent turbidities well below the 0.20 NTU California Title 22 turbidity standard at all four pilots. Pretreatment had minimal benefit on membrane flux rates, and in some cases caused problems with membrane fouling due to coagulant / polymer carryover from the pretreatment unit.

Predesign for a 9-MGD membrane facility at SRWTP is underway. Based on the pilot test results, two of the four membranes that were piloted remain under consideration for the new facility.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: 2008-01-01

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