Case Studies: Advanced Treatment Units

Case Studies: Advanced Treatment Units

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Package MBBR system treats high-strength meat packing plant wastewater 

Problem: Experiencing interruptions in food deliveries due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Cherokee Nation recognized the importance of having their own meat supply. Plans for a meat processing facility were developed on tribal land west of Tahlequah, Oklahoma. With no access to a municipal sewer system at the site, the tribe required a wastewater system to handle variable flows and high organic loading, while being simple to operate and maintain by facility personnel. 

Solution: The Earthtek Environmental Amber MBBR system was selected due to its ability to automatically respond to organic load fluctuations, its minimal operation and maintenance requirements, and the cost-effectiveness of the treatment process for high-strength wastewater. The system is installed in durable buried fiberglass tanks, which are lightweight, watertight and corrosion resistant. The system contains thousands of polyethylene media mixing within aeration tanks, which provide a large surface area for bacteria to attach and grow. The bacteria consume organic material and self-regulate the biofilm thickness, automatically sloughing excess biofilm and adjusting to variable flows and loading. The system includes a pre-existing 10,000-gallon primary tank to settle solids and provide anaerobic digestion of waste sludge; two aerobic MBBR tanks to reduce BOD; one settling tank to capture sloughed solids; chlorine tablet disinfection; and a spray irrigation field for disposal of the treated effluent.

Result: The system has performed as anticipated. 800-972-9940;

ATU meets needs for 100-lot development

Problem: A 100-lot subdivision in Clermont, Florida, near the Clermont Chain of Lakes, was originally platted with lots sized for connection to a municipal sewer system, but sewer infrastructure was never completed. Installer Chris Bryan of Advanced Septic Services was charged with finding an onsite solution that would serve each home. The total lot size was 7,800 square feet, with a sandy soil texture and only 72 inches to the water table from existing grade. The systems required a footprint of less than 500 square feet for the treatment tank and field.

Solution: Bryan specified Fuji Clean Model CE5 systems for each home. The systems feature a design capacity of 500 gpd, and have proven international treatment results of BOD <15 mg/L and TSS <15 mg/L. They offer one-tank treatment with tiny footprint and low profile of 85 by 44 by 62 inches. Their quiet blower (<50 dB) requires less than 1.2 kWh/day, while the lightweight 397-pound tank is easy to maneuver into location. One 3/4-inch airline hookup minimizes excavation requirements. Systems are available with a 525- or 1,050-gallon dosing tank with pump, and a 250-linear-foot drip disposal field is installed no more than 8 to 10 inches deep.

Result: The systems were installed and continue to perform as expected. 207-406-2927;

Package treatment plant enables expansion and reduces maintenance at RV park 

Problem: Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park in Waller, Texas, is a full-service campground and recreation center featuring cabins, tent sites, RV camping, swimming pools, a lazy river and two food service venues. The park’s existing sewage treatment system had been expanded many times and was again at capacity, restricting park service expansion and requiring costly and time-consuming maintenance. The design engineer was tasked with designing a new system that could handle the wastewater flow of 30,000 gpd and meet Texas Commission of Environmental Quality standards.

Solution: A Delta Treatment Systems Package Treatment Plant was selected to process wastewater via an extended aeration and oxidation process that purifies sewage using naturally occurring bacteria to destroy the organic compounds. Continued mixing with air feeds the biological organisms, which consume the volatile materials and convert them into water and inert solids. The result is a clear and odor-free effluent that meets TCEQ permit requirements. The custom package plant is installed on an engineered, reinforced concrete structural slab. The plant has dual aeration basins, sludge holding tanks, blowers and pumps, and a single 10-foot-diameter mechanical clarifier with skimmers and a clarifier bridge. A separate pump tank was incorporated into the design. 

Result: The custom-designed plant was built at the factory and shipped to the project site as a self-contained unit and required little assembly. It continues to perform as expected. 800-221-4436;

Pretreatment system used for high FOG wastewater

Problem: The Cottage Hotel is a historic tavern and restaurant in Mendon, New York. The one-third-acre parcel presents major challenges for a septic system, as space at the site is mostly limited to the footprint of the buildings and parking. Wastewater is treated and then discharged into a nearby stream. Pretreatment had historically been accomplished through an aerobic treatment unit with polishing through a single-pass sand filter with SPDES-permitted surface discharge. Although the ATU and sand filter are good treatment technologies, at this particular site, the fats, oils and greases generated from the kitchen waste were too much for the system to handle, causing the sand filter to clog routinely. Regulatory authorities mandated the failing system be upgraded to be better suited for handling the high strength of commercial wastewater. 

Solution: The owner hired Onsite Engineering to design a commercial septic system to handle the high strength restaurant wastewater — and treat it to the high level needed for a permitted surface water discharge. The redesigned system uses the White Knight Microbial Inoculator Generator from Knight Treatment Systems. The system inoculates and pretreats the wastewater with select bacteria that aggressively digest the FOG and other organic constituents prior to passing through the rebuilt single pass sand filter. 

Result: The system has been working well since its 2017 installation. 800-560-2454; 


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