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Sludge Blanket Response to Storm Surge in an Activated-Sludge Clarifier

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Aspects of operation and design for storm flows at a 190-m3/h (1.2-mgd) dry weather design flow activated-sludge plant were tested. A significant plant enlargement allowed recycle of test clarifier effluent to the main plant versus discharge to a stream. Thus it was possible to test high overflow rates without risk of a permit violation.

On-line monitoring showed that the return sludge concentration increase lagged approximately 1 hour behind the start of the storm flow. This required an adjustment of the power equation model used. Furthermore, when the overflow rate exceeded the settling velocity of the feed solids, the sludge blanket rose faster than the model prediction. This phenomenon required developing a new model to predict blanket behavior under various loading conditions. The new model allows for plant design to more accurately include a clarifier zone for storing solids during peak flows associated with rain storms. An exponential equation, fitted to settling data, was also used in the new model with test data for comparison. The exponential equation gave a low blanket prediction. Results are compared with those of other research for solids storage during peak flow.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 1999-07-01

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  • Water Environment Research (WER) is published monthly, including an annual Literature Review. A subscription to WER includes access to the latest content back to 1992, as well as access to fast track articles. An individual subscription is valid for 12 months from month of purchase.

    Water Environment Research (WER) publishes peer-reviewed research papers, research notes, state-of-the-art and critical reviews on original, fundamental and applied research in all scientific and technical areas related to water quality, pollution control, and management. An annual Literature Review provides a review of published books and articles on water quality topics from the previous year.

    Published as: Sewage Works Journal, 1928 - 1949; Sewage and Industrial Wastes, 1950 - 1959; Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, 1959 - Oct 1989; Research Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, Nov 1989 - 1991; Water Environment Research, 1992 - present.
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