The wastewater treatment sector has recently developed new strategies, which are aimed at reducing pollutants, nutrients, improving efficiency, and reducing costs. A potential and cutting-edge approach to achieving wastewater treatment goals, is quickly emerging as an aerobic granular sludge technology.
Emergence of aerobic granular sludge technology
One of the most widely utilized techniques for the biological wastewater treatment process, for a very long time has been the traditional Activated Sludge Process (ASP) system. It involves a microbial population that is suspended in the wastewater as flocs. However, the Activated Sludge Process method has some limitations, such as low biomass concentration and maximum floor sizes.
Additionally, separate settling and aeration tanks are required for this process, and activated sludge's poor settleability causes low effluent quality and ineffective treatment. The shortcomings of ASP systems are capable of being overcome, by aerobic granular sludge technology.
What is Aerobic Granular Sludge Technology in wastewater treatment?
When compared to the activated sludge process, aerobic granular sludge has different physical, chemical, and microbiological properties. The adoption of this technology can be effective for both primary and secondary wastewater treatment, according to experts. AGS is a 3-phase batch process, which is completed in only one or a single tank. As with biofilms, the bacterial cells in granular sludge congregate to create a solid and thick association.
It comprises of bio-granules utilized as biomass to treat wastewater biologically. But it accomplishes this task devoid of mechanical mixing, and in the presence of oxygen in a regulated setting comparable, to aerobic wastewater treatment.
Working of aerobic granular sludge technology
The granules produced by this method are microbial aggregates that settle more quickly, because there is less hydrodynamic shear present. Additionally, granules in Aerobic Granular Sludge Technology are stacked.
The aerobic granule's thick composition enables exceptional and quick settling capabilities, high biomass retention, and the capacity to withstand significant shock loads. Aerobic, anaerobic, and anoxic zones are all present in each granule. As a result, each granule functions as a treatment facility.
Benefits of aerobic granular sludge technology
1: The method permits the elimination of harmful contaminants' carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus, and biodegradation.
2: It is an economical way to get rid of pollutants in reduced and oxidized wastewater.
3: 20% less space is needed for the treatment plant's surface.
4: 30% fewer energy or power is required.
5: As all treatment stages are finished in a single tank, there is minimal operation.
6: There are savings in both capital and operating costs.
7: Fewer solids are produced to dewater and discard.
8: There is potential for retrofitting wastewater treatment facilities.
Disadvantagesof aerobic granular sludge technology
1: Technology is relatively new, and the vast majority of research is done in labs.
2: The effects of sudden changes in influent composition or hazardous shocks or spills, are still unknown.
3: Industrial wastewater treatment does not yet have complete real-world data available.
As you can see, the treatment of municipal and industrial wastewater is thought to be headed, in the direction of aerobic granular sludge technology. The results will provide a greater grasp of the technology's potential, as more research and advancement are conducted and more industries use it.
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