The Use of Computational Flow Modeling to Determine Disinfection Efficacy of an Advanced Hydrodynamic Vortex Combined Sewer Overflow Treatment System

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The Problem
A number of cities in Northeastern US are investigating the installation of new combined sewer overflow (CSO) treatment units utilizing an Advanced Hydrodynamic Vortex Separator (HDVS) with a self-cleansing screen. Hydrodynamic Vortex systems have traditionally been utilized as high-rate solids liquid separators and only recently have their potential use as contact chambers for high-rate disinfection of CSOs been realized. Conventional disinfection of CSOs, using mixed basins, relies on achieving contact times on the order of 15 minutes.

It has been reported that highly stabilized flow patterns exist in the advanced HDVS because of the presence of internal components such as a central cone and dip plate. Previous work also confirms that the advanced HDVS behaves like 3 “Tanks in Series”. This means there is very little short-circuiting and the flow regime approaches that of the ideal plug flow mixing reactor.

A WERF report on more than 5 years of monitoring of a full-scale CSO disinfection system based on the Storm King Advanced Hydrodynamic Vortex Separator installed at Columbus, GA has demonstrated that these systems provide effective high-rate disinfection at contact times of the order of 3 minutes which is significantly less than the 15 minutes required for conventional disinfection of CSOs (Bonner, 2003). The basis for this observation, however, has not been fully understood.

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