Pure oxygen makes the grade

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Courtesy of Air Products

The Bryn Posteg landfill site, which opened in 1982, is owned and run by Potters Waste Management and is located close to Llanidloes in mid Wales. Licensed for the disposal and treatment of household waste, the site is set in a remote area. The site has always been a full ‘containment’ site, which utilises natural impermeability and engineered systems to prevent leachate from being discharged into the water environment.  The site has a leachate treatment lagoon, where effluent collected from the landfill areas is pre-treated before being released as wastewater into the sewer.

Potters Waste Management was looking to upgrade the existing leachate management and treatment system for the site’s 1,200m3 leachate lagoon. While the lagoon had been coping well with a steady increase in capacity, its exposed location meant that the water temperature had been dropping to levels that were making the surface aeration process less effective, particularly during the winter.  Traditional aeration systems work by reducing the oxygen demand of the wastewater in the lagoon or treatment tank by dissolving as much oxygen from the air as possible. The aeration process encourages the growth of natural microbes or bacteria that cleanse the water and remove organic and other contaminants.

By using high purity oxygen, in place of atmospheric air, the new technology works in the same way, but the oxygen is dissolved more quickly. By increasing the rate at which the oxygen is dissolved and reducing the amount of gas passing through the wastewater, there is reduced heat loss from the process and the wastewater is also less prone to foaming. As a result, both the capacity and efficiency of the process is enhanced.

Working in partnership with Potters Waste Management, Air Products specified the replacement of two surface aerators with a single OXY-DEP® VSA system, which is capable of delivering 875 kg a day of oxygen. Despite the site’s remote location, the modular system was installed quickly and easily, without the need to drain down the lagoon.

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