Sumerged Aerated Filter (SAF) technology improved by changing hydrodynamics

  • Research shows BOD removal can be improved by 20%
  • Findings suggest new way to design modular treatment plants

On 28th June, Tim Holloway, Engineering Manager of WPL, will be speaking at the 3rd Specialised International Conference ‘Ecotechnologies for Wastewater Treatment’ in Cambridge and detailing how he has discovered a radical way to improve the submerged aerated filter (SAF) package wastewater systems.

Holloway said: “Submerged aerated filter – or SAF systems have been around for a long time. But until now we knew very little about the hydrodynamics going on inside. Utility companies commonly have their own prescriptive rates that govern the way media is loaded. However this research shows the accepted way of loading media within the system may not be the most efficient.”

My findings suggest the removal of organic contaminants can be improved by as much as 20 per cent by adjusting the ratio of media to wastewater inside the tank.”

In order to measure the hydrodynamics of SAF systems he used fluorescent dye to measure how pressure, flow and the ratio of media to wastewater affected the way contaminants were removed. And by creating a modular wastewater treatment section with different concentrations of media the research could help utility companies design systems which are more efficient.

Andrew Baird, Technical Diretor of WPL said: “As part of a larger project to overhaul WPL’s submerged aerated filters (SAF’s) , understanding flow and media packing density has been critical in helping to realign the technology with others by significantly reducing TOTEX. SAF technology has been available for a number of years and WPL have recently been working hard to bring it in to 21st century.”

The conference attracts leading water professionals to integrate the technological, environmental, energetic, economic and social factors of the wastewater treatment plants. The objective of the conference is to provide a common place for experts including engineers, scientists, economists and policy makers, to present their most recent technological and scientific outcomes.

WPL consider ‘Ecotechnologies for Wastewater Treatment’ conference a great platform for Tim to exchange ideas on his technical research amongst water professionals from academia, industry, utilities and public authorities.

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Read more on the World Water article | Page 31

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