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PROCESS

Prepared by

Michigan Department of Environmental Quality

Operator Training and Certification Unit

ACTIVATED SLUDGE

PROCESS

To “Treat”

Wastewater

Remove (reduce) Or “Stabilize”

The Material in Wastewater

SECONDARY TREATMENT

Biological Wastewater Treatment

SECONDARY TREATMENT

Biological Wastewater Treatment

Food

O2

O2 consume organic matter

Microorganisms

from the wastewater, using oxygen for

respiration Food

Food

O2 O2

Millions of aerobic and facultative micro-organisms

remove pollutants thru living and growing process

Activated Sludge

Suspended Growth,

Biological Treatment

Activated Sludge System

Biomass

Pri.Eff. (suspended) MLSS Sec. Eff.

Aeration Secondary

Tank Clarifier

Activated Sludge

Suspended Growth,

Biological Treatment

for separation from the water

over and over

0.7 lbs of biological solids per

lb BOD removed

Primary Return

Aeration Tank

Effluent Sludge

Mixed Liquor

(MLSS)

Secondary

Clarifier

PARTS OF A GENERALIZED BACTERIAL

CELL OF THE BACILLUS TYPE

Capsule

Cell Membrane

Nuclear

Matter

Cell Wall

Flagellum

New Cells Wastewater

NH3

Slime Layer CO2

H2O

Cell

Food Membrane

Oxygen

Storage Enzymes

(Absorption)

Soluble Organics Adsorbed

Particle

Mixed Liquor

Flocculation

A process of contact

and adhesion whereby

the particles of a

dispersion

form larger-size

clusters.

Aeration Tank

ADSORPTION

And

ABSORPTION

Secondary

Clarifier

Sludge Processing

Effluent

and Storage

Land

Application Disinfect

WAS

RAS

Screening

Influent

Grit

Primary

Clarifiers Aeration Secondary

Tanks Clarifiers

Typical Flow-Through

Activated Sludge Plant

Biological Wastewater

Treatment

Three Steps

1. Transfer of Food from Wastewater

to Cell.

Adequate Mixing

Enough Detention Time

Biological Wastewater

Treatment

2. Conversion of Food to New Cells

and Byproducts.

Acclimated Biomass

Useable Food Supply

Adequate D.O.

Proper Nutrient Balance

100 : 5 : 1

C :N:P

Biological Wastewater

Treatment

Proper Mixing

Proper Growth Environment

Secondary Clarification

Biological Wastewater

Treatment

Must Have Controls

Proper Growth Environment

Filamentous Bacteria – Form Strings

Control Factors

Organic Hydraulic Load

Load, F:M and Age

Solids Load

Aeration D.O. Secondary

Tank Clarifier

Settleability

Sludge

Return Activated Sludge Blanket

Depth

Activated Sludge System

Coming into Aeration Tank

Secondary

Tank

Clarifier

CALCULATION OF POUNDS

Pounds =

Of STUFF Of Water Of The

In the

X The STUFF

X Water

Water Is In

CALCULATION OF POUNDS

Pounds =

expressed in specific units.

Concentration must be expressed

as parts per million parts.

Concentration is usually reported as

milligrams per liter.

This unit is equivalent to ppm.

1 mg = 1 mg = 1 mg = ppm

liter 1000 grams 1,000,000 mg

Mil Parts Mil Lbs.

Flow or Volume must be expressed

as millions of gallons:

gallons

= MG

1,000,000 gal/MG

How many million gallons are there?

1,000,000 gal/MG

When Volume is expressed as MG

and concentration is in ppm,

the units cancel to leave only Pounds.

Lbs. =

Concentration x Volume x 8.34 Lbs/gallon

Lbs. Lbs.

M Lbs. X M gal X

gal

= Lbs

When Flow is expressed as MGD

and concentration is in ppm,

the units cancel to leave Pounds/Day.

Lbs./Day =

Concentration x Flow x 8.34 Lbs/gallon

M Lbs. X Day

X

gal

= Lbs/Day

EXAMPLE:

How many pounds of suspended solids leave

a facility each day if the flow rate is

150,000 gal/day and the concentration of

suspended solids is 25 mg/L?

Lbs/day = Conc. (mg/L) x Flow (MGD) x 8.34 Lbs

gal

Lbs/day = 25 mg/L x 150,000 gal/day x 8.34 Lbs

1,000,000 gal/MG gal

= 25 x 0.15 x 8.34

= 31 Lbs/day

Activated Sludge System

Coming into Aeration Tank

Secondary

Tank

Clarifier

Example Problem

BOD Loading

An activated sludge plant receives 2.0 MGD from the primary

clarifiers at 120 mg/L BOD. Calculate the organic loading

(Lbs/D BOD) on the activated sludge process.

Answer Given on Next Slide

Example Problem

BOD Loading

An activated sludge plant receives 2.0 MGD from the primary

clarifiers at 120 mg/L BOD. Calculate the organic loading

(Lbs/D BOD) on the activated sludge process.

gal

Lbs = 120 mg/L X 2.0 MGD X 8.34 Lbs

Day Gal

Day

OXYGEN DEMAND

Biochemical Oxygen Demand

B.O.D.

The Quantity of Oxygen Used in

the Biochemical Oxidation of

Organic Material.

5 Day Test

OXYGEN DEMAND

Biochemical Oxygen Demand

B.O.D.

Best to Use a “Moving Average”

to Determine the Average Impact

on a Treatment System.

5 Day Test

BOD Moving Average

Calculate the 7 day moving average of pounds of BOD

for 10/5 and 10/6.

10/5 10/6

2281 13,525

Date Pounds of BOD 2777 - 2281

1374 + 1577

9/29 2281 2459 12,821

9/30 2777 960

10/1 1374 1598 12,821 = 1832

10/2 2459 2076 7

10/3 960 13,525

10/4 1598

13,525 = 1932

10/5 2076

7

10/6 1577

10/7 2351

Need to Balance Organic Load (lbs BOD)

With Number of Active Organisms in

Treatment System

Food to Microorganism

Ratio

F

F:M or

M

How Much Food ?

Primary Effluent BOD

Lbs/D BOD = FLOW (MGD) X 8.34 Lbs/Gal X P.E. BOD (mg/L)

F = Pounds BOD

(Coming into Aeration Tank)

(MLVSS)

M = Pounds MLVSS

(In Aeration Tank)

Mixed Liquor Suspended Solids (MLSS)

and

Mixed Liquor Volatile Suspended Solids (MLVSS)

Mixed Liquor Suspended Solids (MLSS)

and

Mixed Liquor Volatile Suspended Solids (MLVSS)

Determining MLSS

Solids Wt. of Paper, mg

Wt. of Solids, mg

Wt. of Solids, mg

MLSS, mg/L

Volume of Sample, L

Determining MLVSS Volatile

Solids

550 oC

Solids

Wt. of Dish + Ash, mg

Wt. of Volatile Solids, mg

Volume of Sample, L MLVSS, mg/L

How Much Food ?

Primary Effluent BOD

Lbs/D BOD = FLOW (MGD) X 8.34 Lbs/Gal X P.E. BOD (mg/L)

F = Pounds BOD

(Coming into Aeration Tank)

(MLVSS)

M = Pounds MLVSS

(In Aeration Tank)

Analysis Gave Us M (MLVSS)

In mg/L

How Do We Get To Pounds?

Lbs/D BOD =

Volume (MG) X 8.34 Lbs/Gal X MLVSS (mg/L)

Volume Of What ?

Where Microorganisms Are

Aeration Tank

Aeration Tank Volume

(MG)

Aeration Tank Volume

(MG)

Example Calculation:

A. Calculate the volume in million gallons of an aeration

tank that is 120 ft long, 35 ft wide, with a SWD of 15 ft.

V=LXWXD

V = 120 ft X 35 ft X 15 ft = 63,000 ft3

63,000 ft3 X 7.48 gal = 471,240 gallons

ft3

471,240 gallons / 1,000,000 = 0.471 MG

Aeration Tank Volume

(MG)

Example Calculation:

B. The average BOD load on this aeration tank is 1954 lbs/day.

Calculate the organic loading in lbs/day/1000ft3.

63,000 ft3

Need to Balance Organic Load (lbs BOD)

With Number of Active Organisms in

Treatment System

F

F:M or

M

How Much Food (F) ?

Pounds BOD

Lbs/D BOD =

FLOW (MGD) X 8.34 Lbs/Gal X Pri. Eff. BOD (mg/L)

(MLVSS)

M = Pounds MLVSS

CALCULATION OF POUNDS

Pounds =

Of STUFF Of Water Of The

In the

X The STUFF

X Water

Water Is In

Pounds of Volatile Solids

in the Aeration Tank

Lbs MLVSS =

Volume Aeration Tank, MG X MLVSS, mg/L X 8.34 Lbs/gal

Example Problem:

Calculate the pounds of volatile solids in an aeration tank

that has a volume of 0.471 MG and the concentration of

volatile suspended solids is 1700 mg/L.

Food to Microorganism Ratio

Lbs of BOD

=

Lbs of MLVSS

Example Problem:

The 7-day moving average BOD is 2002 lbs and the mixed

liquor volatile suspended solids is 6681 pounds.

Calculate the F/M ratio of the process.

= 0.30

M 6681 lbs MLVSS

Food to Microorganism Ratio

The F/M Ratio for Best Treatment Will Vary for

Different Facilities

Determined by Regular Monitoring and

Comparing to Effluent Quality

Often Will Vary Seasonally

Typical Range:

F:M 0.25 - 0.45

F:M 0.05 - 0.15

Food to Microorganism Ratio

F = Lbs of BOD

=

M Lbs of MLVSS

Monthly (Minimum)

Weekly (Better)

Use Moving Average

Food to Microorganism Ratio Calculations

F/M Ratio is Used to Determine the Lbs of MLVSS

Needed at a Particular Loading Rate

FOR DAILY USE

Lbs BOD F

F/M = = M (Lbs MLVSS)

lbs MLVSS F/M

and BOD loading is 1200 lbs/day

F F

= 0.30 = M

M 0.30

1200 lbs

= 4000 lbs MLVSS

0.30

Food to Microorganism Ratio Calculations

If we Know the Pounds of MLVSS Needed and the Volume

of the Aeration Tank We Can Calculate MLVSS, mg/L.

an Aeration Tank Volume of 0.20 MG.

gal

4000 lbs

= 2398 mg/L

0.20 MG X 8.34 lbs/gal

F:M Calculations

Problem A:

How many pounds of MLVSS should be maintained in an

aeration tank with a volume of 0.105 MG receiving primary

effluent BOD of 630 lbs/d ? The desired F:M is 0.3.

F = 630 lbs/d

=M = 2100 lbs MLVSS

F/M 0.3

F:M Calculations

Problem B:

What will be the MLVSS concentration in mg/L ?

2100 lbs

= 2398 mg/L

0.105 MG X 8.34 lbs/gal

Food to Microorganism Ratio Calculations

F/M Ratio is Used to Determine the Lbs of MLVSS

Needed at a Particular Loading Rate

Lbs BOD F

F/M = = M (Lbs MLVSS)

lbs MLVSS F/M

Specific F/M

and

What Concentration That Would Be in an Aeration Tank?

Prove It !

F:M Calculations II

Problem C:

How many pounds of MLVSS should be maintained in an aeration

tank with a volume of 0.471 MG receiving primary effluent BOD of

2502 lbs/d ? The desired F:M is 0.3.

Problem D:

What will be the MLVSS concentration in mg/L ?

Answers Given on Next Slides

F:M Calculations II

Problem C:

How many pounds of MLVSS should be maintained in an

aeration tank with a volume of 0.471 MG receiving primary

effluent BOD of 2502 lbs/d ? The desired F:M is 0.3.

F/M 0.3

F:M Calculations II

Problem D:

What will be the MLVSS concentration in mg/L ?

0.471 MG X 8.34 lbs/gal

Control Factors

Organic

Load, F:M

Biomass Quantity

Air and Age Hydraulic Load

Solids Load

PE Aeration MLSS

D.O. Secondary FE

Tank

Clarifier

Settleability

Sludge

Return Activated Sludge Blanket

Depth

Graph Showing Growth

Phases in a Biological

X

Growth Rate of Organisms

System

Abundance of Food

Introduced into a

Biological Treatment

System that is in Start-up

Few Organisms

X

Time

Lag Graph Showing Growth

Growth Phases in a Biological

Growth Rate of Organisms

System

Food Begins to be Consumed

Producing Needed Enzymes

Time

Lag Log

Growth Growth

Growth Rate of Organisms

Food

Rapidly

Consumed Organisms Acclimated

Organism Population

Rapidly Increases

Time

Lag Log Declining

Growth Growth Growth

Growth Rate of Organisms

Food

Organism Population

Growth Limited by Food

Supply

Time

Lag Log Declining Endogenous

Growth Growth Growth Growth

Growth Rate of Organisms

Food

Organism Growth Rate

Continues Decline

Time

Lag Log Declining Endogenous

Growth Growth Growth Growth

Growth Rate of Organisms

Stored Food

Food Metabolized -

Organisms Feed on

One Another

(Producing Less Sludge)

Sludge Production

Time

Lag Log Graph Showing

Declining Growth

Endogenous

Growth Growth Growth Growth

Phases in a Biological

Growth Rate of Organisms

System

Food

Summary

Sludge Production

Time

Graph Showing Growth Phases in a

Biological System

the activities of

Microorganisms in a

biological treatment

system is related to the

Average Age of the

Organisms in the System

or the “CRT” of the System

Controlled in an

Activated Sludge System

by Wasting which will be

discussed later.

Cell Residence Time, CRT

Mean Cell Residence Time, MCRT

Biomass

Sludge Age, SA Age

that an Organism Remains in the

Secondary Treatment System

Suspended Solids in Aerator, lbs

SA, days =

Suspended Solids in PE, lbs/day

Total MLVSS, lbs (Aerator + Clarifier)

MCRT =

Total MLVSS Wasted + Effluent TSS, lbs/d

The SA and MCRT Calculations are Seldom Used

The Most Common (and Best for Most Processes) Is the

Cell Residence Time

Cell Residence Time

The Average Length of Time in Days that an

Organism Remains in the Secondary

Treatment System

Total MLVSS Wasted, lbs/d

Cell Residence Time

The Average Length of Time in Days that an

Organism Remains in the Secondary

Treatment System

CRT, days = Total MLVSS, lbs

Total MLVSS Wasted, lbs/d

Example:

CRT = 6681 lbs

MLVSS = 6681 lbs

835 lbs/d

MLVSS Wasted = 835 lbs/d

CRT = 8.0 Days

Calculate the CRT.

Cell Residence Time

The CRT for Best

Treatment

Will Vary for Different

Facilities

Determined by Regular

Monitoring and

Comparing to Effluent

Quality

Often Will Vary

Seasonally

Conventional Activated Sludge

Aerator Detention Time 4 - 8 Hrs.

F:M 0.25 - 0.45

CRT 4 - 6 Days

Aerator Detention Time 16 - 24 Hrs.

F:M 0.05 - 0.15

CRT 15 - 25 Days

Lag Log Declining Endogenous

Young

Growth

Sludge

Growth Growth

Old Sludge

Growth

Growth Rate of Organisms

Food

Conventional

Treatment

Extended Air

Sludge Production

Time

Young Sludge

• Few Established Cells

• Log Growth

• High F:M

• Low CRT

Young Sludge

Poor Flocculation

Poor Settleability

Turbid Effluent

White

Billowing

Foam

High O2

Uptake Rate

Old Sludge

• Slow Metabolism

• Decreased Food Intake

• Low Cell Production

• Oxidation of Stored Food

• Endogenous Respiration

• Low F:M

• High CRT

• High MLSS

Old Sludge

Dense, Compact Floc

Fast Settling

Straggler Floc

Slurp

Control Factors

Organic

Load, F:M

Biomass Quantity

Air and Age Hydraulic Load

Solids Load

PE Aeration MLSS

D.O. Secondary FE

Tank

Clarifier

Settleability

Sludge

Return Activated Sludge Blanket

Depth

Cell Residence Time

The Average Length of Time in Days that an

Organism Remains in the Secondary

Treatment System

Total MLVSS Wasted, lbs/d

by Wasting the Appropriate Amount of

Excess Biomass

Waste Activated Sludge (WAS)

Control Factors

Organic

Load, F:M

Biomass Quantity

Air and Age Hydraulic Load

Solids Load

PE Aeration MLSS

D.O. Secondary FE

Tank

Clarifier

Settleability

Sludge

Return Activated Sludge Blanket

Depth

(WAS)

Sludge Wasting Rates

Lbs/day WAS VSS

Therefore:

Lbs WAS VSS = Lbs of MLVSS in aerators

day CRT (days)

Sludge Wasting Rates

With a known RAS VSS concentration, the

WAS Flow in MGD can be calculated:

gal

= WAS (MGD)

RAS VSS (mg/L) x 8.34 lbs

gal

Sludge Wasting Rates

1440 minutes/day

shorter period:

gallons/day .

WAS (gpm) =

min wasting to be done/day

Sludge Wasting Rates

Example Calculations

Problem #1:

pounds of MLVSS in the aeration tanks, calculate the

pounds of VSS that must be wasted per day.

5.8 days

Sludge Wasting Rates

Problem #2:

Calculate the flow rate in MGD that must be pumped in order to waste

the number of pounds calculated in Problem #1 given a Return

Sludge concentration of 9000 mg/L VSS.

day

9000 mg/L x 8.34 lbs/gal

Sludge Wasting Rates

Problem #3:

wasting was done in 24 hours.

day 24 hrs 60 min min

Sludge Wasting Rates

Problem #4:

wasting was done in 4 hours.

13,300 gal x 1 hr

= 55.4 gal/min

4 hr 60 min

Sludge Wasting

Excess Biological Solids eliminated from the

secondary treatment system to control the

cell residence time of the biomass

When to Waste:

Continuous (Whenever Possible)

Sludge Wasting

Where to:

Primary Clarifiers

Advantage - Co-Settling

Disadvantage - Are Solids Really Wasted?

RAS

WAS

Solids

Handling

Sludge Wasting

Where to:

Solids Handling

Advantage – Know Solids are Out of the System

Disadvantage – Thinner Solids to Solids Process

RAS

WAS

Sludge Wasting

How Much:

Important Controls

of Treatment, the Biomass Population

Sludge Wasting

How Much:

Proper Wasting Control

And

Metering is Essential

Control Factors

Organic

Load, F:M

Biomass Quantity

Air and Age Hydraulic Load

Solids Load

PE Aeration MLSS

D.O. Secondary FE

Tank

Clarifier

Settleability

Sludge

Return Activated Sludge Blanket

Depth

Lag Log Declining Endogenous

Growth Growth Growth Growth

Growth Rate of Organisms

Food

Conventional

Treatment

Extended Air

Sludge Production

Time

Activated Sludge

Suspended Growth,

Biological Treatment

for separation from the water

over and over

0.7 lbs of biological solids per

lb BOD removed

Yield Coefficient (Y)

Growth Rate

Y=

Pounds of Biological Solids Produced

Per Pound of BOD Removed

Yield Coefficient (Y)

Growth Rate

Pounds of Biological Solids Produced

Per Pounds of BOD Removed

Example

Average Concentration Of BOD Entering Aeration

125 mg/L

Average Concentration of BOD from Secondary System

5 mg/L

2.0 MGD

Average RAS Concentration (Wasting from Return)

8000 mg/L

Yield Coefficient (Y)

Growth Rate

Pounds of Biological Solids Produced

Per Pounds of BOD Removed

Example

BOD Removed = 125 mg/L – 5 mg/L = 120 mg/L

At 2.0 MGD

Lbs BOD Removed = 2 MGD X 8.34 X 120 mg/L

= 2002 Lbs/Day

At Y= 0.7

Biomass Produced = 2002 Lbs/Day X 0.7

= 1401 Lbs/Day

Yield Coefficient (Y)

At 2.0 MGD

Lbs BOD Removed = 2 MGD X 8.34 X 120 mg/L

= 2002 Lbs/Day

At Y= 0.7

Biomass Produced = 2002 Lbs/Day X 0.7

= 1401 Lbs/Day

Yield Coefficient (Y)

At 2.0 MGD

Lbs BOD Removed = 2 MGD X 8.34 X 120 mg/L

= 2002 Lbs/Day

At Y= 0.7

Biomass Produced = 2002 Lbs/Day X 0.7

= 1401 Lbs/Day

8000 mg/L X 8.34 lbs/gal

Yield Coefficient (Y)

At 2.0 MGD

Lbs BOD Removed = 2 MGD X 8.34 X 120 mg/L

= 2002 Lbs/Day

At Y= 0.5

Biomass Produced = 2002 Lbs/Day X 0.5

= 1001 Lbs/Day

8000 mg/L X 8.34 lbs/gal

Yield Coefficient (Y)

The Difference:

20,998 gallons

15,002 gallons

5,996 gallons Per Day

A Major Advantage of Extended Aeration

(Old Sludge Age)

300 Less Solids Produced

Sludge Volume Index

200

100 Extended

Conventional High Rate

Air

0 0.20 0.40 0.60 0.80 1.00 1.20

F:M Ratio

Yield Coefficient (Y)

Growth Rate

Y=

Pounds of Biological Solids Produced

Per Pound of BOD Removed

How to Determine Y for a Facility?

Use Monthly Average of Pounds of Solids Wasted

Divided by

the Monthly Average of Pounds of BOD Removed

Activated Sludge

Suspended Growth,

Biological Treatment

for separation from the water

over and over

Clarifier

Primary Return

Aeration Tank

Effluent Sludge

Mixed Liquor

Secondary

Clarifier

Control Factors

Organic

Load, F:M

Biomass Quantity

Air and Age Hydraulic Load

Solids Load

PE Aeration MLSS

D.O. Secondary FE

Tank

Clarifier

Settleability

Sludge

Return Activated Sludge Blanket

Depth

Return Activated Sludge

Biological Solids (Mixed Liquor Solids) which

have settled in the secondary clarifier,

continuously returned to the aeration system.

Why:

• Control sludge blanket in clarifier

• Maintain a sufficient population of

active organisms in service

It’s the Bugs

Return Activated Sludge

Biological Solids (Mixed Liquor Solids) which

have settled in the secondary clarifier,

continuously returned to the aeration system.

Why:

• Control sludge blanket in clarifier

• Maintain a sufficient population of

active organisms in service

Not a Means of

Controlling MLSS

Return Activated Sludge

Biological Solids (Mixed Liquor Solids) which

have settled in the secondary clarifier,

continuously returned to the aeration system.

Why:

• Control sludge blanket in clarifier

• Maintain a sufficient population of

active organisms in service

Controls Solids

Depth in

Seconday Clarifier

Return Activated Sludge

RAS Control:

• 1 – 3 Feet Depth

• Too Much – Solids Over Weir

• Too Little – Thin RAS Concentration

(More Volume When Wasting)

Return Activated Sludge

RAS Control:

• Consistent Flow Rate

• % Influent Flow

• RAS Metering

How Much is Enough

(or Too Much)

Sludge Judging

RAS Mass Balance

Q Q + RQ

MLSS RQ

RAS

(RQ + Q) X 8.34 lbs/gal X MLSS (mg/L)

RQ X 8.34 lbs/gal X RAS (mg/L)

Q Q + RQ

MLSS

RQ RAS SS

RAS Mass=Balance

Lbs Into Clarifier Lbs Out of Clarifier

(Q + RQ) X 8.34X MLSS = RQ X 8.34 X RAS

(Q + RQ) X MLSS = RQ X RAS SS

(RQ X MLSS) + (Q X MLSS) = RQ X RAS SS

Q X MLSS = RQ X RAS SS - RQ X MLSS

Q X MLSS = RQ X (RAS - MLSS)

Q X MLSS

RAS SS - MLSS

= RQ

Return Activated Sludge

Formula and Just Memorize the Formula

RQ = Q X MLSS

RAS SS - MLSS

Return Activated Sludge

RQ = Q X MLSS

RAS SS - MLSS

Units for RQ will Match Units for Q

% RQ = 100 X MLSS

RAS - MLSS

Return Rates - Example Calculations

Given: MLSS = 2400 mg/L

RAS SS = 6500 mg/L

Flow = 2.0 MGD

1. Calculate the Return Sludge Rate in MGD

needed to keep the solids in the process in

balance.

6500 mg/L - 2400 mg/L

4100

Return Rates - Example Calculations

Given:

MLSS = 2400 mg/L

RAS SS = 6500 mg/L

2. Calculate the Return Sludge Rate in

% of plant influent flow needed to

keep the solids in the process in balance.

6500 mg/L - 2400 mg/L

4100

Return Rates - Practice Calculations

Work Calculations on Separate Paper

Answers Given on Next Slides

RAS SS = 8200 mg/L

Flow = 2.5 MGD

to keep the solids in the process in balance.

% of plant influent flow needed to

keep the solids in the process in balance.

Return Rates - Practice Calculations

Given: MLSS = 2700 mg/L

RAS SS = 8200 mg/L

Flow = 2.5 MGD

1. Calculate the Return Sludge Rate in MGD needed

to keep the solids in the process in balance.

8200 mg/L - 2700 mg/L

5500

Return Rates - Example Calculations

Given:

MLSS = 2700 mg/L

RAS SS = 8200 mg/L

2. Calculate the Return Sludge Rate in

% of plant influent flow needed to

keep the solids in the process in balance.

8200 mg/L - 2700 mg/L

5500

Return Activated Sludge

RQ = Q X MLSS

RAS SS - MLSS

In Summary

Units for RQ will Match Units for Q

% RQ = 100 X MLSS

RAS - MLSS

Control Factors

Organic

Load, F:M

Biomass Quantity

Air and Age Hydraulic Load

Solids Load

PE Aeration MLSS

D.O. Secondary FE

Tank

Clarifier

Settleability

Sludge

Return Activated Sludge Blanket

Depth

Biological Wastewater

Treatment

Three Steps

1. Transfer of Food from Wastewater

to Cell.

2. Conversion of Food to New Cells

and Byproducts.

Biological Wastewater

Treatment

Three Steps

If Settling and Separation is Poor

RAS Will be Thin and/or Solids May Be Lost in the Effluent

Settleometer Test

What Determines the Volume of Settled Sludge?

Time

Determination of the Settling Properties

(Compaction) of MLSS

Settleometer Test

Although a 1000mL

Graduated Cylinder

May be Used

A Settleometer

Designed for this

Test is Best

Settleometer Test

Although a 1000mL

Graduated Cylinder

May be Used

A Settleometer

Designed for this

Test is Best

A Settleometer has a

Capacity of 2000 mL

Graduated in

mL/Liter

Settleometer Test

Collect Sample

Below Scum Line

Set up Settling

Test Immediately

Portion of Same Sample

Settleometer Test

Fill Settleometer to

1000 Graduation

Start Timer

Mix

Gently

Settleometer Test

While Settling Observe:

Color of ML and Supernatant

Supernatant Turbidity

Straggler Floc

Record

Settled

Sludge

Volume

Every 5

Minutes for

30 Minutes

Sludge Blanket

1000

900

Settled Sludge Volume, mLs

800

700 Good

600

500

400

300

200

100

5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40 45 50 55 60

Minutes

1000

900

Settled Sludge Volume, mLs

800

700

600 Not Good

500 (Settling Too Fast)

400

300

200

100

5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40 45 50 55 60

Minutes

Settleometer Test

Too Fast

in Effluent

1000

900

Settled Sludge Volume, mLs

800

700

600 Not Good

500 (Settling Too Slow)

400

300

200

100

5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40 45 50 55 60

Minutes

Settleometer Test

Too Slow

in High Flows

Solids Separation

Rate

Characteristics

Rising Sludge

Sludge Volume Index (SVI)

of activated sludge which has settled for 30 min.

(Weight [in grams] of the solids that occupy the Volume.)

SVI = MLSS Conc, grams/L MLSS, mg/L

1000

Sludge Volume Index (SVI)

The volume in milliliters occupied by one gram of

activated sludge which has settled for 30 min.

SVI = MLSS Conc, grams/L MLSS, mg/L

1000

SVI Practice Problem:

30 minute settling 260 mL Work

MLSS Conc. 2400 mg/L Calculations on

Separate Paper

Answer Given

on Next Slide

Sludge Volume Index (SVI)

The volume in milliliters occupied by one gram of

activated sludge which has settled for 30 min.

SVI = MLSS Conc, grams/L MLSS, mg/L

1000

SVI Practice Problem:

30 minute settling 260 mL 260 mL

SVI =

MLSS Conc. 2400 mg/L 2400 mg/L

1000

2.4

Sludge Volume Index (SVI)

activated sludge which has settled for 30 min.

SVI = MLSS Conc, grams/L MLSS, mg/L

1000

The higher the number, the less compact the sludge

Sludge Density Index (SDI)

The grams of activated sludge which occupies a

volume of 100 mL after 30 min. of settling.

grams/L of MLSS

SDI =

mLs settled in 30 min.

100

Sludge Density Index (SDI)

The grams of activated sludge which occupies a

volume of 100 mL after 30 min. of settling

MLSS / 1000

SDI =

30 min. Settling / 100

Sludge Density Index (SDI)

The grams of activated sludge which occupies a

volume of 100 ml after 30 min. of settling

grams/L of MLSS

SDI =

mLs settled in 30 min.

100

SDI Practice Problem:

30 minute settling 260 mL Work

MLSS Conc. 2400 mg/L Calculations on

Separate Paper

Answer Given

on Next Slide

Sludge Density Index (SDI)

The grams of activated sludge which occupies a

volume of 100 ml after 30 min. of settling

grams/L of MLSS

SDI =

mLs settled in 30 min.

100

SDI Practice Problem:

SDI = 2400 mg/L / 1000

30 minute settling 260 mL 260 mL / 100

MLSS Conc. 2400 mg/L

2.4

SDI = = 0.92

2.6

Sludge Density Index (SDI)

The grams of activated sludge which occupies a

volume of 100 ml after 30 min. of settling

grams/L of MLSS

SDI =

mLs settled in 30 min.

100

The lower the number, the less compact the sludge

SVI - SDI Relationship

100

SVI = SDI

100

SDI = SVI

SVI - SDI Relationship

100 100

SVI = SDI =

SDI SVI

Practice Problems:

Answers Given on Next Slide

SVI - SDI Relationship

100 100

SVI = SDI =

SDI SVI

Practice Problems:

100/133 = 0.75

100/0.6 = 167

Return Sludge Concentration

and SDI

With the Clarifier Solids in Balance, the Settled

Sludge Concentration in the Settleometer

Will Approximate the RAS SS Concentration

Return Sludge Concentration and SDI

MLSS, G/L

SDI = mLs settled in 30 minutes

100

1.0 G

SDI 1.0 =

100 mLs settled

1G 1G

= = 1%

100 mL 100 G

1G

= 1000 mg = 10,000 mg = 10,000 mg

100 mL 100 mL 1,000 mL L

Return Sludge Concentration and SDI

With Clarifier Solids in Balance :

SDI of 0.8

RAS SS = 0.8 % Solids

SDI = 0.8

RAS SS = 8,000 mg/L

Sludge Volume Index

In Summary

of activated sludge which has settled for 30 min.

The grams of activated sludge which occupies a

volume of 100 mL after 30 min. of settling.

Sludge Volume Index

mLs Settled

SVI =

MLSS, mg/L

1000

grams/L of MLSS

SDI =

mLs settled in 30 min.

100

SVI - SDI Relationship

100

SVI = SDI

100

SDI = SVI

SVI - SDI

Relationship of F:M to Settleability

System

Relationship Between The

F:M of a System to the

Ability of the Biomass to

Settle in Clarifier

Three Areas of Operation

where the Biomass

Normally Settles Well

Relationship of F:M to Settleability

System

F:M Ratio Are

High Rate

F:M 0.9 to 1.2

Conventional

F:M 0.25 to 0.45

Extended Air

F:M Less than 0.2

Note: The High rate

Mode is Seldom Used

Except when Followed

by Additional Treatment

Relationship of F:M to Settleability

System

Potential Consequences of

Operation with an F:M Out

Of these Ranges

ACTIVATED SLUDGE

PROCESS

Prepared by

Michigan Department of Environmental Quality

Operator Training and Certification Unit

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