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Investigation of the Impact of a High Salt Wastewater on Biological Nitrification

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A proposed industrial TDS discharge to the American Bottoms Regional Wastewater Treatment Facility could increase chloride levels entering the American Bottoms biological nitrification system by 532 to 941 mg/L above the current range of 1000 to 2000 mg/L with a corresponding increase in TDS of 900 to 1800 mg/L. The primary objective of this study was to evaluate the impact of the range of salt loads that encompass and exceed the proposed industrial TDS discharge loads to American Bottom's nitrification process. The study was conducted by operating two bench-scale biological reactors that simulated American Bottom's nitrification process. One reactor was operated as a control treating plant wastewater with natural background salt concentrations from existing sources. The second reactor was operated with a similar wastewater that was also periodically spiked with salt to simulate the proposed industrial salt load. These studies were conducted with seed sludge and wastewater from the full-scale plant.

The study results demonstrated no adverse impact of the projected TDS loads on American Bottom's nitrification performance. Nitrification was not adversely impacted by sustained salt concentrations of 355 to 2255 mg/L as chloride based on effluent ammonia concentrations, similar nitrate production, insignificant effluent nitrite concentrations and similar dissolved oxygen uptake rates. Nitrification was also not adversely impacted by progressive increases in salt concentrations between 2255 and 9458 mg/L over the course of one week based on similar degrees of ammonia removal, nitrate production, dissolved oxygen uptake rates and negligible nitrite production.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2008-01-01

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