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Flocculation – Flotation Pretreatment Improves Operation of MBR Installed to Treat Snack Food Manufacturing Wastewater

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Large food manufacturing company has facilities to produce their well known brand name dairy based products in rural Indiana. As is commonly case with dairy wastewater, significant amount of proteins, sugars, oil and some suspended solids are present. Company installed membrane bioreactor (MBR) System to treat such wastewater for possible reuse.

The MBR performed poorly due to membrane fouling. Manufacturer suggested that in addition to screen other primary pretreatment is needed to reduce FOG and organic TSS as low as possible prior to MBR treatment. Classical DAF and advanced hybrid centrifugal – dissolved air flotation (GEM) were pilot tested. Both systems performed well, but GEM removed FOG and TSS to lower amount and produced drier sludge. The full scale GEM System has been installed in June 2010. Dual high molecular weight flocculants and GEM flotation remove TSS below 50 mg/l, FOG below 2 mg/l and produce sludge with 20% solids. Data are currently collected to evaluate how such pretreatment improves operation of the MBR.

Keywords: DAF vs. GEM flotation; MBR fouling; pretreatment; snack food wastewater

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: 2010-01-01

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