Assessment of erosion and sedimentation dynamic in a combined sewer network using online turbidity monitoring

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Courtesy of IWA Publishing

Eroded sewer sediments are a significant source of organic matter discharge by combined sewer overflows. Many authors have studied the erosion and sedimentation processes at the scale of a section of sewer pipe and over short time periods. The objective of this study was to assess these processes at the scale of an entire sewer network and over 1 month, to understand whether phenomena observed on a small scale of space and time are still valid on a larger scale. To achieve this objective the continuous monitoring of turbidity was used. First, the study of successive rain events allows observation of the reduction of the available sediment and highlights the widely different erosion resistance for the different sediment layers. Secondly, calculation of daily chemical oxygen demand (COD) fluxes during the entire month was performed showing that sediment storage in the sewer pipe after a rain period is important and stops after 5 days. Nevertheless, during rainfall events, the eroded fluxes are more important than the whole sewer sediment accumulated during a dry weather period. This means that the COD fluxes promoted by runoff are substantial. This work confirms, with online monitoring, most of the conclusions from other studies on a smaller scale.

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