Energy Optimisation by Determination of Critical Oxygen Point in WWTP Operations

The control of dissolved oxygen levels in Waste Water Treatment plants has been the subject of considerable technological improvement over the past 2 decades. Typically the energy required for aeration purposes in aerobic activated sludge plants is in the region of 35% to 65% of the total energy costs for the facility. On a global basis energy conservation is taking on greater and greater significance caused by 3 main factors namely ; the cost of energy supply; the available regional energy supply capacity ; the environmental impact of electricity generation. A new technology has been developed by Strathkelvin Instruments which allows the very simple, quick and accurate determination of the critical dissolved oxygen concentration for activated sludge. By accurately measuring this value and using it to set up the plant aeration control systems further significant energy savings can often the made. The implementation of the required changes to the treatment facility, whilst relatively straightforward, requires careful consideration to manage all the associated risks.

This paper details the implementation process on 3 separate POTW in the UK. The paper will detail the processes undertaken at each of the works to fully establish baseline measures of performance, identify and manage the risks associated with all the proposed changes and track the benefits achieved as a result of the implementation process.

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