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Running Head: LAB 1 WASTEWATER CONSTITUENTS

Laboratory Report on the Constituents of Wastewater


Group Members: Brandeice Barrett, Sade Campbell and Loathan Ingram
Submitted on: October, 2016
University of Technology, Jamaica

LAB 1 WASTEWATER CONSTITUENTS

Abstract
This report presents the analysis of the wastewater present at the University of Technology,
Jamaica base on the standards established by the National Environment Protection Agency
(NEPA). The three samples that were tested were taken from two locations on the campus
using the grab and composite sampling methods. These samples then underwent several
laboratory tests and the results compared to that of the agency.
The parameters that were analysed stemmed from four categories which the act outlines.
These categories included: Organics (Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD)), the solids (Total
Suspended Solids (TSS), Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) and Total Solids (TS)), the physical
properties (turbidity, pH and temperature) and the biological components (Total coliforms
and fecal coliforms). The physical parameters for the samples was found to be within the
range of
The wastewater was collected from two sites on the university campus, Lilllians and
Shellys. A Sigma Max 900 portable sample was used to collect grap and composite samples
from these two locations. It was found

LAB 1 WASTEWATER CONSTITUENTS

Table of Contents

LAB 1 WASTEWATER CONSTITUENTS

Introduction
Wastewater is water that has been contaminated due to domestic, industrial or a
combination of both activities. And it is this wastewater which is being treated and discharged
into rivers, lakes and other natural water bodies. Therefore it is increasingly vital that the
components be known in order to ensure the management of the wastewater does not have a
negative impact on the environment. This can be achieved from the analysis of the
wastewater constituents, which can be generally categorized as the physical, chemical and
biological characteristics.
The physical characteristics are the physical properties of the wastewater such as the
total suspended solids (TSS). The chemical characteristics are separated into organic and
inorganic, examples of these include the Biological Oxygen Demand (BOD), free chlorine,
phosphates and nitrates. Biological characteristics refer to the microorganisms present in the
wastewater such as coliform organisms.
The Total Suspended Solids (TSS) are particles that are larger than 2 microns found in
the water column. Anything smaller than 2 microns (average filter size) is considered a
dissolved solid.The BOD refers to the amount of oxygen that would be consumed if all the
organics in one liter of water were oxidized by bacteria and protozoa (Biological Oxygen
Demands, n.d.).
Coliform bacteria originates as organisms in soil or vegetation and in the intestinal
tract of warm-blooded animals (fecal coliform). This group of bacteria has long been an
indicator of water contamination and possible presence of intestinal parasites and pathogens.
Coliform bacteria are relatively simple to identify, are present in much larger numbers than
more dangerous pathogens, and react to the natural environment and treatment processes
similarly to pathogens. By observing coliform bacteria, the increase or decrease of many
pathogenic bacteria can be estimated (Treyens, 2009

Methodology
The first stage of the analysis was the collection of the sample using the grab method
from the designated locations of Shellys and Lillians. The Sigma Max 900 was used to
collect individual samples and a composite sample. Followed by the laboratory testing which
including: solids, physical properties, organics and biological tests.

LAB 1 WASTEWATER CONSTITUENTS

The physical properties test involved testing the turbidity, temperature and pH of the sample.
Turbidity was carried out by p poring a small amount of the sample into a crucible which was
cleaned with oil before inserting it into the turbidity analyser and reading recorded. Both the
pH and the Temperature was obtained by pouring the sample into the cap of the pH meter and
replacing the pH meter into the cap. The sample was allow to sit for 5nmins in order for the
reading to stabilize.
The organic component of the sample, which is the Biochemical Oxygen Demand, was
determined by the use of the DO Method. The BOD test firstly involved preparing the
samples and pipetting 2ml of each into 300mL BOD bottles. The bottles were filled with
dilution water, stoppered and inverted couple times to mix efficiently. A probe is afterwards
used to measure the dissolved concentration. The sample is further placed in an incubator at a
temperature of 20C for 5 days where it is again measured for the remaining dissolved
oxygen using the same probe.
Finally the Total and Faecal Coliform Bacteria was carried out by use of the Multiple-Tube
Technique (MPN). The faecal coliform involved the inoculation of the sample into a broth of
concentration (1:1, 1:10 or 1:100, that produced air bubbles was transferred into the BG broth
in 15 test tubes. These test tubes were placed in the incubator for 48 hours. After the elapse of
the time, the test tubes containing air bubbles were recorded and compared to a statistic chart.
The Total faeacal coliform was carried out by transferring the bacteria from these test tubes of
BG to test tubes containing EC broth with the use of a sterile rod (using fire to sterilize). The
new set of test tubes was returned to the incubator for an additional 24 hours, following
which the results were collected as previously done with the total coliform.
The solids test consisted of (Total Dissolved TDS, TSS and TS was obtained through
gravimetric filtration and oven drying. 100 ml of the sample was filtered using a vacuum
funnel, from which the residue and filtrate was collected and place in the oven until only
solid components remained on the filter paper and in the beaker. The weight obtained and
recorded.

LAB 1 WASTEWATER CONSTITUENTS

Apparatus:
Pipette

DRB200 Reactor

Incubator

Distilled Water

Broth Tubes

Sample cells

Tube Racks

Beakers

Spectrophotometer

Measuring cylinders

Powder Pillows (Chlorine, Nitrate, Phosphates)

Stoppers

BOD bottle (300 mL)

Sample bottles

Result
Table 1. showing the measured parameters from the analysis of wastewater from two
different locations and their composite
Site Locations
Parameters

SHELLYS ( Sample

LILLIAN

COMPOSITE(

1)

S (Sample

Sample 3)

2)
Temperature

21oC

33.6oC

28.6oC

pH

7.1

6.7

6.9

Turbidity

48.6 NTU

518 NTU

246 NTU

Total Solids

2675 mg/L

1730

5081 mg/L

mg/L

LAB 1 WASTEWATER CONSTITUENTS

Total Suspended Solids

781 mg/L

121mg/L

1575 mg/L

Total Dissolved Solids

1894 mg/L

1609mg/L

3506 mg/L

Biological Oxygen Demand

1032 mg/L

714 mg/L

363 mg/L

Total coliform

2400

16000

16000

faecal coliform

1300

16000

16000

Table 2. showing the limits of the effluent as outlined by NEPA

Parameters

mg/L

Chemical Oxygen Demand

100

Biological Oxygen Demand

20

Total and fecal coliform

200

Nitrate

10

Phosphate

Free Chlorine at 530nm/80 chlorine

1.5

Suspended Solids

20

pH

Calculations:

Total faecal coliform

LAB 1 WASTEWATER CONSTITUENTS

EC Broth
1ml

0.1ml

0.01ml

5/5

5/5

5/5

MPN value (from table) x ______10_______ = MPN/100 mL


(Largest volume tested in dilution series used for MPN determination)
1600 x 10 = 16000 MPN/100 mL
1

Discussion
This discussion will seek to examine the results from the experiments by comparing
them to that of the NEPA standards. The sample of wastewater used, represents effluent
collected at the University of Technology (Shellys and Lillians). Various test were carried

LAB 1 WASTEWATER CONSTITUENTS

out on different volumes of effluent. The following test were done to determine the different
constituents of the effluent waste water ,turbidity, temperature, pH, total and faecal coliform,
solids, and BOD. It is important to note that these constituents do no act independently of
each other but rather contributes to each other.
For the physical constituent of the wastewater, the turbidity and TSS are the most
visible indicators of water quality. In terms of water quality, high levels of total suspended
solids will increase the temperature of the water and decrease dissolved oxygen (DO) levels.
This is because suspended particles absorb more heat from solar radiation than the water
molecules will. This heat is then transferred to the surrounding water by conduction. Warmer
water cannot hold as much dissolved oxygen as colder water, so DO levels will drop
(Perlman,2016). This is observed with the samples 2 and 3, having a TSS of 121mg/L and
1575mg/L respectively and corresponding BOD of 714 mg/L and 363 mg/L. Demonstrating
that the sample with greater TSS reading yielded a lesser BOD reading. The same trend was
not observed in sample 1 with a TSS reading of 781 mg/L and BOD of 1032 mg/L.
Temperature is an important factor in the suitability of the Class I water for use as a
habitat as it affects aquatic organisms in a variety of ways. The body temperature of most
aquatic organisms is the same as the surrounding water and fluctuates with the water
temperature. Most aquatic organisms are adapted to live in a narrow temperature range and
they die when the temperature becomes too low or too high. The temperature of the effluent
was found to be
Temperature

21oC

33.6oC

28.6oC

pH

7.1

6.7

6.9

According to the effluent parameter standards of NEPA the accepted amount of TSS
should be less than 150 mg/L. Sample 2 which was taken from Lillians was the only sample
which fell into this range, with the samples from Shellys (Sample 1) and the composite
(Sample 3) sample containing TSS levels far greater than the standard 781 mg/L and 1032
mg/L respectively. The TDS standard is 1000 mg/L. However the TDS of sample 1 was 1894

LAB 1 WASTEWATER CONSTITUENTS

mg/L, sample 2 was 1609 mg/L and sample 3 was 3506 mg/L. All three samples had TDS
readings greater than the pre-established limit of 1000 mg/L.
The pH of the effluent or waste water is determining factor in the the type of
treatment to be given. In waste water treatment, pH is an important measure for the
coagulation process which is turbidity removal, disinfection, water softening and corrosion
control ( Mandal, 2014). Most aquatic organisms have a narrow pH tolerance range of 6.5 8.5.
Acidic waters can cause toxic heavy metals to be released into the water. Acid rain and mining
operations can lower the pH of water bodies.

BOD has traditionally been used to measure of the strength of effluent released from
conventional sewage treatment plants to surface waters or streams. This is because sewage
high in BOD can deplete oxygen in receiving waters, causing fish kills and ecosystem
changes. Based on criteria for surface water discharge, the secondary treatment standard for
BOD has been set at 30 mg BOD/L (i.e. 30 mg of O2 are consumed per liter of water over 5
days to break down the waste). Most aquatic organisms need oxygen to survive.
Dissolved oxygen is the oxygen present in water available to aquatic organisms.

Biological Oxygen Demand

1032 mg/L

Biological Oxygen Demand

714 mg/L

363 mg/L

20

The presence of fecal coliform bacteria in aquatic environments indicates that the
water has been contaminated with the fecal material of man or other animals. At the time this
occurred, the source water may have been contaminated by pathogens or disease producing
bacteria or viruses which can also exist in fecal material. Some waterborne pathogenic
diseases include typhoid fever, viral and bacterial gastroenteritis and hepatitis A. The
presence of fecal contamination is an indicator that a potential health risk exists for
individuals exposed to this water. Fecal coliform bacteria may occur in ambient water as a
result of the overflow of domestic sewage or nonpoint sources of human and animal waste.

Total coliform

2400

16000

16000

LAB 1 WASTEWATER CONSTITUENTS

faecal coliform

1300

Total and fecal coliform

16000

16000

200

The clear container of volume 300 ml, was collected first and served as the sampling
agent for most test carried out. The first test carried out was the pH and temperature test using
the pH probe. These values were observed to be in close approximation to that of the
stipulated standard. The chemical oxygen demand (COD) seem to fall above the standard but
is the second and only constituent that has fallen remotely close to that NEPA. A high COD
signifies high content of organic, inorganic compound. The COD and BOD shares a
relationship in that the BOD reflects the amount of oxygen required to degrade the organic
compounds present in the waste water. Theoretically, the COD should be higher than the
BOD, which is proven so in this case. However such small account for the BOD could be as a
result of the use of anaerobic baffled reactor. Anaerobic baffled reactor (ABR) has great
advantages in comparison to aerobic processes but also has its disadvantages.
It was also observed that the sample of effluent waste contained high levels of
suspended solid in comparison to the standards. Fecal coliform was calculated based on the
last test using the EC broth and gave positive tests in all tubes. The calculated value shows it
is significantly higher than the limits. The nitrate and phosphate results show that they have
fallen outside the range. The chlorine concentration present in the sample was seen to be
significantly lower than the expected. Some of the disadvantages of ABR such as low
reduction in nutrients and pathogens, and the effluent and sludge produced usually requires
more advanced treatment. These disadvantages could have contributed greatly to the
inconsistencies in the various test values.

Conclusion:
In conclusion, the various test carried out on the sample of effluent wastewater may have not
reflected its true components due to parallax errors in reading the instruments and assessing
the data. With regards to the sample of wastewater collected and the great inconsistencies
seen in the results compared to that of the NEPA, the effluent sample collected requires more

LAB 1 WASTEWATER CONSTITUENTS

treatment in order remove more dissolved solids and organic/inorganic compounds. This can
be done through tertiary treatment.

Perlman, U. H. (n.d.). Water properties: Dissolved oxygen. Retrieved October 08, 2016, from
http://water.usgs.gov/edu/dissolvedoxygen.html