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Design and Startup of a Membrane-Biological-Reactor System at a Ford-Engine Plant for Treating Oily Wastewater

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Abstract:

A wastewater-treatment facility at Ford (Dearborn, Michigan) was recently upgraded from chemical de-emulsification to ultrafiltration (UF) followed by a membrane-biological reactor (MBR). This paper describes the design, startup, and initial operational performance of the facility. Primary findings are as follows: (1) the MBR proved resilient; (2) the MBR removed approximately 90% of chemical-oxygen demand (COD) after primary UF; (3) the removal of total Kjeldahl nitrogen by MBR appeared to be more sensitive to operating conditions than COD removal; (4) nitrification and denitrification were established in one month; (5) the MBR removed oil and grease and phenolics to below detection levels consistently, in contrast to widely fluctuating concentrations in the past; (6) permeate fluxes of the primary and MBR UF were adversely affected by inadvertent use of a silicone-based defoamer; and (7) zinc concentrations in the effluent increased, which might have been a result of ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid used in membrane washing solutions and/or might have been within typical concentration ranges.

Keywords: automotive; engine plant; membrane-biological reactor; nitrification; oily wastewater; ultrafiltration

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2175/106143006X98778

Publication date: April 1, 2006

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  • 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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