Removal of algae from facultative pond effluent
Wastewater stabilization ponds have gained popularity as a means of secondary wastewater treatment because of their low cost and simplicity of operation and maintenance, in addition to several other advantages. However, the presence of algae in the effluent from facultative ponds may cause undesirable environmental impacts, such as DO depletion or eutrophication, in water bodies to which this effluent is discharged. Thus, regulations and/or the adverse environmental impacts of effluents containing algae sometimes necessitate reduction or removal of algae from pond effluents. Many methods have been used for the purpose of removal of algae from wastewater stabilization pond effluent. Upflow rock filtration and coagulationsedimentation have been investigated in this research. In the past, mechanisms of removal of algae in rock filters and factors that affect the removal process have not been well explained. Design of these filters has not been related mathematically to the operating variables. Three pilot rock filters were built for the purpose of this research. The first filter was filled with rock of 1 cm average diameter, the second and third filters were filled with 5 cm and 10 cm average diameter rock, respectively. Five different hydraulic loadings were applied to these filters, with variable influent characteristics and under different environmental conditions. The results of this research have shown that gravitational settling and hydrodynamic forces are the most important mechanisms affecting removal of algae in upflow rock filters. Also, a method of design of unisize-media upflow rock filters for removal of algae from facultative pond effluent has been established. The cost of coagulant has been the main disadvantage of the process of coagulation-sedimentation for algae removal from wastewater stabilization pond effluent. In this research, jar tests were carried out to determine the effect of settling time and/or addition of kaolinite or bentonite with the primary coagulant, alum, on the optimum dose of this primary coagulant required for removal of algae from facultative pond effluent. Both increase in settling time and coagulant aids, namely kaolinite and bentonite, have reduced optimum alum dose. Kaolinite and bentonite, applied as low-cost primary coagulants, were also effective in removing algae from facultative pond effluent. From the very limited experiments carried out at the end of this research, it was shown that crossflow microfiltration has some potential as a process for algae removal from facultative pond effluent. A mathematical model has been developed in this work to describe the eutrophic state of King Talal Reservoir in Jordan. The model predicts that even elimination of phosphorus from the effluent of Al-Samra Wastewater Stabilization Ponds will not bring the reservoir into an oligotrophic state.