- Equalization Tanks or Ponds- an expensive but effective way to slow influent flow to the biological system
- Polishing Ponds - while normally for treating small quantities of pollutants, the polishing pond can be used to supplement biological treatment during washout events. This may require bacteria (bioaugmentation) to quickly increase the amount of active biomass.
- Add polymer to improve biomass settling rates in the secondary clarifier. In this case a chemical polymer can help increase the settling velocity of the biomass and help maintain MLVSS levels in the system.
- Following washout of MLVSS is one of the most common times operators rely on bioaugmentation products. By adding a quick source of acclimated microbes, the biomass can be quickly established to target MLVSS. You can also try to find a local plant with similar wasteater to "truck in slduge", but this is often more costly than adding commercial bioaugmentation products if they are readily available.
No matter how much we try to segregate storm water from true waste water, heavy rains create increase flows to wastewater systems. Storm water should often be treated when it contains hydrocarbons, fertilizer and other components of runoff; but in the case of floods - we are talking about high volume, low COD/BOD waste. In a worse case scenario, influent flow increases to a level where a substantial portion of the microbial biomass is washed into the effluent. Below I will give the options on how to prevent or quickly correct this problem:
Erik Rumbaugh has been involved in biological waste treatment for over 20 years. He has worked with industrial and municipal wastewater facilities to ensure optimal performance of their treatment systems. He is a founder of Aster Bio (www.asterbio.com) specializing in biological waste treatment.
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