A computational fluid dynamics analysis of placing UV reactors in series
Ultraviolet (UV) light water treatment reactors are commonly used in both wastewater and drinking water disinfection. UV technology can effectively inactivate a large number of pathogens at low UV doses, however adenovirus requires a substantially higher dose than most pathogens of interest. In order to meet adenovirus inactivation requirements, UV reactors are often placed in series and the total inactivation is calculated as the sum of the reactors' individual UV doses. In this paper, it is shown that this simple summation treatment of UV dose may be acceptable. A parameter called the reactor additivity factor is introduced to properly characterize the interaction between UV reactors in series. Three types of UV reactors are modelled using computational fluid dynamics, and their RAFs are computed. The validity of reactor additivity in practice in wastewater and drinking water systems is discussed.