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Water Treatment Plants

Basic principles of water treatment and water treatment


schemes
Coagulation-flocculation-settling
Filtration rapid and pressure and slow
Disinfection chlorination
Water Treatment Technologies
Colloidal solids
Colloids, Turbidity and NTU and JTU
Coagulation-flocculation and coagulating and flocculating agents
Suspended solids
Settling
Clariflocculators
Flotation
Filtration
Surface filtration and depth filtration
Slow sand filters, Rapid gravity filters and Pressure filters
Coliform count (MPN)
Disinfection: Chlorination, Ozonation and UV radiation
Thermal tratment
Filtration and membrane filtration
Coagulation-flocculation and sedimentation
Flash
mixing tank
Clari-
flocculator
Rapid sand
filter
Treat. water
reservoir
Lime
dosing tank
Alum tank
Chlorinator
Lime
prep.tank
Raw water
lime water
alum
Water
grit
underflow
sludge
backwash water
for
back
wash
chlorine in
storage bullet
Treated water
Conventional water treatment plant
Removing colloidal and suspended
solids; and improving biological water
quality by design

Coincidental removal of other
pollutants: heavy metals, colour, etc.

Ground water may need only
chlorination

Ground water may need softening,
RO, defluoridation, etc., treatments
Water Treatment Technologies
Hardness
Hardness (total, permanent and temporary, Ca and Mg harness)
in mg/L as CaCO
3
Water softening by lime soda process, by ion-exchange process
and by reverse osmosis
+ +
+ + + + + Cl or SO Ca OH Mg OH Ca Cl or SO Mg 2 ) ( ) (
2
4
2
2 2
2
4
2
O H OH Mg CaCO OH Ca HCO Mg
O H CaCO OH Ca HCO Ca
2 2 3 2 3
2
2 3 2 3
2
2 ) ( 2 ) ( 2 2
2 2 ) ( 2
+ + + + +
+ + + +
+
+

+ +
+ + +
3 2 2
2
3
2 3 2 2
2
) (
HCO O H CO CO
O H CaCO OH Ca CO
+ +
+ + + + + Cl or SO Na CaCO CO Na Cl or SO Ca 2 2 2
2
4
3 3 2
2
4
2
Water Treatment Technologies
Dissolved solids
TDS (at 103-105C and 180C)
Ion exchange process
Reverse osmosis
Vacuum evaporation (solar
water stills)
Ion exchange process:
Running and exhaust of the
resin and regeneration
Regeneration chemicals
Regeneration wastewater
generation
Protection of ion-exchange
resins from fouling
Soft water plants and
Demineralized water plants
Pressure
sand filter
Water
softner
(resin bed)
backwash water
to drain
backwash water
to drain
regeneration chemical
wastewater to drain
rinse water
to drain
process water
soft water
Salt tank
Salt dose
tank
process
water
common salt
Raw water
tank
Activated
Carbon filter
SAC
Resin bed
Degassifier
WBA
Resin bed
SBA
Resin bed
Mixed
Resin bed
DI water
tank
Raw water from
Rawwater pump at ETP
A
A
DI water
to the boiler
as feed water
Rawwater
for backwash
Backwash water
30% HCl
Water for
regeneration
Backwash water
Regeneration
chemcial waste
Rinse
wastewater
Blower
Air
Air & stripped
Carbon dioxide
Caustic
solution
Soft water
(1)
Soft water for
Regeneration (1)
Soft water
(1)
Regeneration
solution
Backwash water
Regeneration waste*
Regeneration waste
Backwash water
Rinse wastewater
Rinse wastewater
Regeneration waste
Backwash water
Rinse wastewater
Blower
Air
DI water
Caustic & HCl
solutions
Demineralized Water Plant
Water Treatment Technologies
Reverse osmosis
Osmosis and osmotic pressure
Reverse osmosis RO water and
reject water
RO membranes and fouling, and
cleaning of membranes
Water pretreatment and
conditioning
Chlorination for taking care of
iron like reduced inorganic
species
Micro-filters and ultra-filters
may be used may require
prior dechlorination
Sodium metabisulfite for
dechlorination
Activated carbon adsorption for
dechlorination


Chlori
nation
Filtration
Dechlor.
RO
process
Chlorinating
chemical
Water for
backwashing
Backwash
water
Dechlorinating
agents
Cleaning
chemicals
Wastewater
from cleaning
RO water
Reject water
Process water
Water Treatment Technologies
Evaporation and condensation
Very costly and energy intensive
Energy for evaporation and for condensation
Vacuum evaporation in multiple effect evaporators
Facilitates use of waste and low temp. heat
conserves energy through repeated use of latent heat
Steam economy is up to 6 (4 is typical)
Number of stages of evaporation-condensation are finite (6!)
Boiling temperature in successive evaporators declines and difficult to operate
below certain temp. (50C!)
Evaporation rate decreases with decreasing boiling temperature
Water Treatment Technologies
Solar water stills

Water Treatment Technologies
Adsorption
Granular activated carbon column similar pressure sand filter
Powdered activated carbon contact tank and a clarifier
Adsoption isotherms break point exhaust point

Breakthrough Curve for Adsorption Column
Adsorption Isotherms
Langmuir Isotherm





X is Weight of solute adsorbed on adsorbate (mg)
M is weight of adsorbent (difference of initial and final amount
of adsorbate in the wastewater) (grams)
K is equilibrium constant
b is a constant representing monolayer coverage per unit
weight of adsorbent (mg/gram)
C
e
is equilibrium concentration of adsorbate (mg/l)
Plot 1/(X/M) against 1/C
e
for obtaining K and b values
e
e
KC
KbC
M
X
+
=
1
b C Kb
M
X
e
1 1 1 1
+
|
|
.
|

\
|
|
.
|

\
|
=
Freundlich Isotherm




X is Weight of solute adsorbed on adsorbate (mg)
M is weight of adsorbent (difference of initial and final amount
of adsorbate in the wastewater) (grams)
C
e
is equilibrium concentration of adsorbate (mg/l)
k is freundlich capacity factor
n is Freundlich intensity parameter
Plot 1/(X/M) against 1/C
e
for obtaining K and b values


Adsorption Isotherms
n
e
kC
M
X
/ 1
=
k C
n M
X
e
ln ln
1
ln + =
|
.
|

\
|
Regeneration and reactivation
Processes used to recover the adsorptive capacity of the
spent activated carbon
Oxidation of the adsorbed materials by chemicals
Driving off the adsorbed materials by steam
Use of solvents for the removal
Biological conversion processes to remove adsorbed materials
Spent carbon is heated in a furnace to drive off the adsorbed
material some new compounds may be formed on the
carbon surface - Burn off these new compounds
Methodology for the regeneration of the PAC is not well
defined and not regenerated
Regeneration usually results in the loss of 2-5% of the
adsorption capacity
Attition due to mishandling contributes to 4-8% loss of the
activated carbon

Coagulation-Flocculation
Coagulation-flocculation
Employed to transform colloidal solids into suspended solids
(for turbidity removal)
Colloidal solids of water are 0.01 to 1 micron in size, have
net negative surface charge, show brownian motion, do
not settle but remain stable
Coagulation flocculation involves destabilizaion of colloids by
chemical dosing and floc formation by particle collisions
Typical coagulants(coagulating agents) and flocculants
(flocculating agents)
Natural and synthetic organic polymers
Metal salts such as alum or ferric sulfate
Prehydrolized metal salts such as ployaluminum chloride
and polyiron chloride
Laboratory Experimentation
Involves finding
Optimum pH
Optimum dose of Coagulant
Optimum dose of Polyelectrolyte/flocculating agent
Find rough dose of coagulant at 6 pH
Take known volume of sample and adjust its pH to 6
Add coagulant in small increments till visible flocs appear
After each addition rapid mix for 1 min. and slow mix for 3 min.
and observe for visible flocs
Find optimum pH
Take one liter of sample into each of the six beakers of Jar Test
Apparatus and adjust pH to 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9
Apply rough dose to all the samples, rapid mix the samples for 3
min., then slow mix for 12 min. and then allow to settle the
formed flocs for 30 min.
Measure turbidity of supernatant in each of the samples and find
optimum pH for coagulation-flocculation
Find optimum dose of the coagulant
Take a liter sample into the 6 beakers and adjust to optimum pH
Apply a range of coagulant doses (50% to 150% of the rough
dose) to the samples, rapid mix for 3 min., then slow mix for 12
min. and then allow flocs to settle for 30 min.
Measure turbidity of supernatant in each of the samples and find
optimum dose of coagulant for coagulation-flocculation
Find optimum dose of the polyelectrolyte
Take a liter sample into the 6 beakers and adjust to optimum pH
Apply optimum dose of coagulant to all, rapid mix for 3 min. and
then apply a range of doses of the polyelectrolyte (upto 5 mg/l)
Slow mix the samples for 12 min. and then allow the flocs to
settle for 30 min.
Measure turbidity of supernatant in each of the samples and find
optimum dose of the polyelectrolyte
Laboratory Experimentation
Coagulation Equipment
Conventional system: includes a rapid mixing tank, a
flocculation tank containing longitudinal paddles and
conventional settling tank
System that includes a rapid mixing tank and a
clari-flocculator: combines both flocculation and
settling
Sludge blanket unit: combines mixing, flocculation and
settling in a single unit
Settled sludge recirculation is often practiced
Reduces both coagulant dose and the time for floc formation
Increases efficiency (possible blanket settling is considered
responsible)
Clari-flocculation tank
Gravity
Settling/sedimentation/clarification
Gravity Settling/Sedimentation/Clarification
Sedimentation/settling/clarification are interchangeably used
terms
Used for
Grit removal
TSS removal in the primary settling tanks
Chemical floc (coagulation-flocculation and precipitation) removal
Biological flocs removal in the secondary settling tanks
Sludge thickeners (solids concentrating)
Purposes served include
Clarification of water/effluent 1
st
purpose
Production of sludge at desired consistency 2
nd
purpose!
Types of gravity settling
Discrete particle settling
Flocculent settling
Hindered settling (zone settling!)
Compression settling
Stokes Law and Terminal settling
velocity of particles
Forces acting on a suspended particle
Gravity force


Buoyant force


Drag force



Increases with increasing speed zero for zero speed
g V
p particle

g V
p fluid

2
2
p f luid p d
v A C
p p
d v t 3
For laminar
flow conditions
V
p
is volume of the particle
Net force of the particle makes the particle to accelerate
When drag force becomes equal to the net of gravity force and
buoyant force net force and acceleration of the particle
becomes zero, and the particle settles at constant velocity
(terminal settling velocity!)
Stokes Law and terminal settling
velocity of particle
p
fluid
fluid particle
d
p
d
C
g
v
|
|
.
|

\
|

=


3
4
34 . 0
3 24
+ + =
R R
d
N N
C
v
p p
R
d v
N =
Where
Where
v


18
2
p
w
w p
p
d g
v
|
|
.
|

\
|
=
For laminar flow
p
w
w p
p
d g v
|
|
.
|

\
|

=


33 . 3
For turbulent flow
v is 1.003 x 10
-6
Discrete Particle Settling
Settling tanks are designed for a selected design terminal settling
velocity (v
t
)
A particle is considered as removed if it touches the bottom of the
tank
For 100% settling removal, particles with v
t
terminal settling
velocity have to be > surface loading or overflow rate


In a settling basin design settling velocity, detention time (HRT)
and depth are related


Actual design takes into account the effect of inlet and outlet
turbulence, short circuiting, sludge storage, and velocity
gradients due to operation of sludge removal equipment
A
Q
v
t
=
time Detention
depth Tank
v
t
=
Q is flow rate
A is surface area
A
Q H
v
WH
Q
L
H
v
WH
Q
v
WHv Q
L
Hv
v
v
L
v
H
t
t
h
h
h
t
h t
= =
=
=
=
=
=
t
A
Q
v
t
=
Indicates grit removal efficiency is independent of depth and
detention time of the channel/chamber
Depth can be reduced scouring problem is a limitation
horizontal flow velocity should be <0.4 m/sec.
Increase of width of the channel reduces horizontal flow
velocity and results in settling of organics
|
|
.
|

\
|

=


p
s
f
Kgd
V
8
k depends on the material being scoured
(0.04 for unigranular particles and 0.06 for
sticky interlocked matter)

p
and are densities of particles and liquid
d is particle diameter
f is Darcy-Weisbach friction factor
(influenced by surface roughness and
Reynolds number, etc. typical values 0.02-
0.03
Camp-Shields equation
for scour velocity
Discrete Particle Settling
Flocculent particle settling
Particles do not settle as discrete particles instead
during sedimentation they coalesce and flocculate
Extent of coalescence or flocculation depend on
Overflow rate
Depth of settling basin
Velocity gradients in the system
Concentration of particles
Range of particle sizes
Settling characteristics of a suspension of flocculent
particles can be obtained by a settling column test
Settling column
Height: equal to the depth of the proposed settling tank
Diameter can be anything influences of the wall should be
taken care off sample required should be small enough
Provided with sampling ports
Settling column test
To begin with ensure uniform distribution of particle size from
top to bottom of the column
Duration of test should be equal to the settling time in the
proposed tank
Draw samples from the ports at various time intervals,
analyze for TSS and compute % removal
Plot % removal against time and depth and construct curves
of equal % removal
Overflow rates for various settling are determined by noting
where the curve intersect the x-axis



Flocculent particle settling
|
.
|

\
|
+
|
.
|

\
|
A
=
+
=

2
(%)
1
1
n n
n
h
n
R R
H
h
R
Settling Column Settling Profile Graph
Primary Sedimentation Tank
Purpose is removal of readily settleable solids and floating
material from wastewater
Usually designed for 50-70% suspended solids removal
efficiency
Rectangular or circular sedimentation tanks are used
2 or more tanks are provided to allow repair & maintenance
Multiple rectangular tanks require relatively less land and initial
construction cost is also relatively less
Sedimentation tanks have
Inlet section
Outlet section
Facilities and provisions for the settled sludge scrapping,
collection and removal
Facilities and provisions for the floating material entrapment,
skimming, collection and removal
Sedimentation tank can be considered to include Settling zone
and Sludge zone
Flow pattern is radial with central feed arrangement
Has a center well of 15-20% of the tank diameter and 1.0 to 2.5
m depth is used
Center well has a tangential energy dissipating inlet
wastewater is discharged into the well within the upper 0.5-0.7
m at 0.3 to 0.45 m/sec flow velocity
Solids removal mechanisms
Smaller tanks have hopper bottom with >45 inclination with the
horizontal
3.6-9.0 m diameter tanks have solids removal equipment
supported on beams spanning the tank
Larger diameter tanks have a central pier supporting the
mechanism and is reached by a walkway or bridge
Bottom of the tank is sloped at 1 in 12 to 64 or lesser
Solids are scrapped to the center and removed
Clarified liquid is skimmed off over weirs into a collection
trough
Circular Primary Sedimentation Tank
Clarified sewage
Collection trough
Scum retaining baffle
Distribution baffle
of central well
Scrapper arm
Skimmer blade
Central well
Central pier
Influent pipe
Sludge draw-off pipe
Central rotating
equipment
Sludge trough
Tangential openings in the pier
for the distribution of the influent
Slope 1 in 12
Side wall
of clarifier
0.5m
0.3m
0.3m
0.3m
0.6m
Central pier
Sludge trough
0.5 m
1.5 m
0.5 m
Sludge draw-off pipe
Influent pipe
Primary clarifier
Section to show side wall with
clarified sewage collection trough
Bottom sludge trough and outlet
3.0 m
Combination of flocculator-clarifier
inorganic chemicals or polymers can be added to improve
flocculation
have inner cylindrical flocculation compartment usually
equipped with a paddle-type or low speed mixer
Stacked clarifiers (multilevel clarifiers), that minimize land
requirement, are often used (in sugar industry)
Plate settlers and tube settlers are often used in place of
primary sedimentation tanks for reducing the space
requirement
Hydraulic short circuiting impose limits on size
Plates or tubes are placed inclined for facilitating sliding of
settled solids

Circular Primary Sedimentation Tank
Inlet
Full width inlet channels with inlet weirs can introduce vertical
velocity component spreading into the sludge hoppers (provided at
the inlet end)
Inlets with submerged ports/orifices (velocities in the ports/orifices
are in the range of 3-9 m/min.)
Inlet channels with wide gates and slotted baffles
Inlet baffles can be used to reduce high initial velocities and
distribute flow width wise usually extend from 150 mm below and
300 mm above the water surface
Outlet
Clarified effluent is collected into a collection trough through an
overflow weir
Floating material or settled suspended solids should not be washed
out with the clarified effluent
Floating material retaining or entrapping baffle is provided
Weir length is designed to avoid washout out of sludge
Rectangular Primary Sedimentation Tanks
Facilities and provisions for the settled sludge scrapping,
collection and removal
Settled sludge is collected at the inlet end
Chain and flight solids collectors
Have a pair of endless conveyor chains
Scraper flights of wood or fiberglass, running full width of the
tank and attached to the chains at 3 m interval
The settled solids are scrapped
to solids hoppers In case of small tanks multiple hoppers
are used in larger tanks
to a transverse trough in case of large tanks - troughs in turn
have cross collectors
Rectangular
Primary Sedimentation Tank
Traveling bridge type collectors
Travel up and down the tank on rubber wheels or on rails
supported on the sidewalls
Scrapper blades are suspended from the bridge (returning
scraper blades lifted free of the solids blanket)
Facilities and provisions for floating material
entrapment, skimming, collection and removal
Floating scum is collected at the effluent end
Floating scum is skimmed and carried to the effluent end
and entrapped for avoiding overflow into the clarified
effluent trough
Flights returning at the liquid surface can be used
Water showers can be used to push forward the floating
scum
Baffle is provided in front of the overflow weir for the scum
entrapment until removed
Rectangular Primary Sedimentation Tank
In small tanks scum draw-down facility consisting of a
horizontal, slotted pipe that can be rotated by a lever or screw
can be used
Limitation - creates large volume of scum liquor
Transverse rotating helical wiper attached to a shaft can also
be used for scum removal
Scum is removed from the water surface and moved over an
inclined apron for discharge to a cross-collecting scum trough
Other provisions and facilities
Tanks may sloping bottom towards the influent end
Influent end has sludge hoppers or sludge trench
Scum pit is provided for storing the scum liquid removed
Sludge pump, piping and tank may be there to remove the
collected sludge from the sludge hopper or trench
Rectangular
Primary Sedimentation Tank
Design of primary clarifier
Overflow rate and hydraulic retention time obtained from
the settling test and settling profile diagram are used to
find surface area and depth of the clarifier
Safety factors of 1.25 is usually used to take into account
Inlet and outlet disturbances
Disturbances created by the rotating mechanism to scrap the
settled sludge and to collect the floating scum
Wind blow effects
Temperature variations
Flow short-circuiting
Design also takes into account the following:
Horizontal flow velocity (below the scour velocity)
Weir overflow rate (below a limit to avoid density currents)
Weir overflow balancing to avoid short-circuiting problems
Flooding of collection trough
Detention time 1.5 to 2.5 hours (2.0 hr.)
Overflow rate
Average flow 30-50 m
3
/m
2
.day (40) 24-32 (26)
Peak flow 80-120 m
3
/m
2
.day (100) 48-70 (60)
Weir loading 125-500 m
3
/m.day (250)
Rectangular tanks
Depth 3-4.9 (4.3)
Length 15-90 (24-40)
Width 3-24 (4.9-9.8)
Flight speed 0.6-1.2 m/min (0.9)
Circular tank
Diameter 3-60 (12-45)
Bottom slope 1 in 16 to 1 in 6 (1 in 12)
Flight speed 0.02-0.05 rpm (0.03)
Primary Sedimentation Tank
Short circuiting and hydraulic stability
Tracer studies can be used for determining short-circuiting
problems
Method of influent flow distribution can also affect short circuiting
Temperature difference of 1C between incoming wastewater and
wastewater of the tank can cause density current
Wind blowing across the top of an open sedimentation tank can
cause circulation cell to form this reduces effective volumetric
capacity of the tank
Surface loading rates (overflow rates)
There can be regulations prescribing limits to surface loading rates
Overflow rates must be set low enough to ensure satisfactory
performance at peak rates of flow
Primary Sedimentation Tank
Detention time
Solids reaching the settling tank are susceptible to flocculation
Flocculation is aided by eddying motion of fluid within the tank
Level of flocculation depends on the time elapsed (detention
time)
In cold climates because of increase in water viscosity detention
time required also increases (1.38 time more HRT for 10C water
that when temperature is 20C)
Weir loading rates
Have little effect on efficiency of primary settlign tanks
Primary sludge scum characteristics and quantities
Factors influencing are
Characteristics of untreated water (strength and freshness)
Period of sedimentation
Conditions of the deposited solids
Period between solids removal operations
Primary Sedimentation Tank
Granular media filtration
(rapid gravity, slow sand and roughing filters)
Filtration types
Depth filtration and surface filtration
Granular media filters
Slow sand filters
Rapid (sand) gravity filters
open type
Closed type (pressure filters!)
High rate filters
Duel media (sand and anthracite) and multi-media (sand,
anthracite and garnet) filters
Roughing filters (pre-filters)
Membrane filters
Micro-filters
Ultra-filters
Nano-filters (Reverse Osmosis)
Home water treatment options
Candle filters
Bio-sand filter
Filtration
Used to remove suspended particles, small flocs, turbidity and
even pathogens
Rapid gravity filter for flocs and suspended particles removal
Slow sand filters for the removal of turbidity and pathogens
Roughing filter as pre-filter for reducing suspended solids,
flocs and turbidity to acceptable levels and making water fit
specially for slow sand filtration
VRF (vertical upflow) and HRF (horizontal flow)
Mechanisms of treatment
Transport of solids to the filter medium grain surface by settling,
inertial impaction/interception, diffusion, brownian motion, etc.
Retention of the transported solids by straining, electrochemical
forces, vander Waals forces, physical adsorption, etc.
Bio-film and biological action (biodegradation)
Chemical destabilization (coagulation) and flocculation also
contributes (Alum enhances pathogen removal in SSF)
Particle Removal Mechanisms
Suspension
feeders
Grazers
Attachment to
biofilms
Capture by
predators
to medium
to previously
removed
particles
by medium
by
previously
removed
particles
Straining
(fluid and
gravitational
forces)
Attachment
(electrochemical
forces)
Physical-Chemical
Biological
Particle
Removal
Mechanisms
A bed of filtering medium supported on a gravel layer resting
on a porous structure and under-drain system
Filter medium: sand (effective size & uniformity coefficient)
Water reservoir of desired height (depth) is maintained over
the filter bed for higher rates of filtration
Filtration rates are in the range 4 to 12 m/hr.
In closed type, water is maintained under pressure over the bed
Continued use clogs the filter bed and reduces filtration rates,
necessitates regular backwashing (every 24 to 72 hours once)
The filtration unit has a channel for feeding water and draining
out the backwash water
Over-head backwash water supply reservoir with necessary
piping and fittings is used in the backwashing (compressed air!)
Overflow weir and troughs are provided over the filter bed for
the backwash water collection and conveyance to the channel
Necessary piping and fittings specially valves to control flows
both during run and during backwashing (draining out of initial
filtration water as wastewater)
Rapid Gravity (open type) Filters
Schematic diagram of a rapid gravity filter
Here A, B, C, D and E are the flow control valves used
Provisions for use ofc compressed air in the backwashing
Gravel
Backwash water
Overhead tank
Multi-media filter
Filter media
Commonly used media
Sand (SG: 2.6 typical bed depth 8 to 24 inch) typical effective size
0.45 to 0.55 mm and uniformity coefficient of 1.65
Anthracite coal (SG: 1.6; typical bed depth: 6.5 to 18 inch)
Garnet (SG: 4.2; typical bed depth: 4.5 inch)
Green sand (a natural resin specific to iron and manganese)
Needs regeneration (reappearance of punk colour) with potassium
permanganate
Filtralite (baked clay!) (SG 1.6 to 1.8) synthetic medium
Granular activated carbon
Characteristics
Size and size distribution (effective size and uniformity coefficient)
Density and bulk density
Porosity (external!) and swelling properties
Ability to support microbial film development
Adsorption and ion exchange properties
Strength properties such as hardness
Grain size and its distribution are important and affects clear
water head loss and built-up head loss during filter run
Sieve analysis and plotting cumulative passing through the given
sieve sizes on a log-probability plot
Sieve size is described by mesh number
10 mesh has 2 mm pore size
18 mesh has 1 mm pore size
35 mesh has 0.5 mm pore size
60 mesh has 0.25 mm pore size
99% pass size and 1% pass size
Effective size: pass size for 10% of the material (indicated by D
10
)
median size of the grain
Uniformity coefficient: ratio of D
60
/D
10
(similar to Stand. Dev.)

D
90
(needed in the backwash velocity calculations)
Filter medium
Log probability plots of filter medium size
The graded gravel layer
Supports the filter medium from below
The filter medium should not penetrate into it and gravel
should not enter the under-drain system
Particles of a layer above should not penetrate the layer
below it
Spherical particles allow penetration of particles of <1/3
rd
the
gravel size
Size of the particles in the above layer can be half the size of the
particles in the layer below
90 percentile size filter medium particles should not penetrate
the top gravel layer
Gravel of the bottom most gravel layer should not penetrate
the under drain system
Minimum size of the gravel should be twice the perforations size
The graded gravel layer
Thickness of each of the gravel layers should be >6 times the
largest size particle of the layer
Graded gravel layers for an under drain system with 5 mm
perforations and for a filter medium of 1.0 mm (D
90
) size
10-20 mm size gravel of >120 mm thickness
5-10 mm size gravel of >60 mm thickness
2.5-5.0 mm size gravel of >30 mm thickness
1.25-2.5 mm size gravel of >15 mm thickness
A newly assembled filter may be started with backwashing
Ensures proper stratification of the filter medium above
The graded gravel layer should ensure uniform
distribution of the upward flowing backwash water and
compressed air
The under-drain system
Under drain system should
Support the graded gravel, filter bed and water column
Allow filtered water to pass through, collected and conveyed out
Allow the incoming backwash water (and compressed air) to pass
through and dispersed for the filter bed backwashing
The under drain system can be
A water box with porous concrete roof
Concrete slabs with slots supported on concrete ribs
A water manifold with perforated laterals
The graded gravel and the under drain system may better be
considered together as integral components
Geo-textiles and geo-nets can also be used in assembling the
under drain system


Typical filtration rates of 5 to 15 m/hr. are achieved through
maintaining a water column (water reservoir) of up to 1.5 m
height above the filter bed
In closed type rapid gravity filters, a virtual water column of the
desired height is maintained through pressurizing the water
Size of the filter medium, extent of clogging of the filter bed,
and height of water column over the filter bed determine the
filtration rates
Gravity filters are operated either at constant rate (but variable
head) or at constant head (but variable rate)
Head loss/filtration rate or turbidity break through are used as
the basis for filter backwash
Pizometers are used for the monitoring of head loss across the
filter
Water reservoir over the filter bed


Backwash water overflow weirs and troughs are provided in
the reservoir zone above the filter bed
Level difference between the overflow weir and water level in
the backwash water reservoir is maximized
Overflow weir is provided above the fluidized filter bed (during
backwashing) for avoiding filter medium washout
The Filtration unit is provided with a channel either in the
middle or to one side
Backwash water troughs drain into this channel
Has a wash water drain, and water inlet of the filter opens into
this channel
The channel ensures submergence of the filter bed in water
Water reservoir over the filter bed
Overhead reservoir of backwash water
Holds filtered water and supplies for the filter backwashing
Almost constant head of water is maintained in the reservoir to
ensure constant backwash velocities in the filters
The reservoir, and the piping and fittings are designed to
ensure the water supply for achieving the desired backwash
velocity
Excess backwash velocities can washout the filter medium and
lower velocities can result in inefficient cleaning of the filter
Sizing of the overhead reservoir (capacity and water depth)
reliability (against pump and power failures) is given importance
Deciding on the relative elevation of the reservoir
Filtered water is pumped and maintained in the overhead
reservoir
Pumping system for the reliable pumping of filtered water into
the overhead reservoir is important
Filter cycle
Filter operation
Once filtered water reaches the acceptable quality, stop wasting
and collect filtered water
Filter water either at constant rate or at constant head
Backwash the filter when
Head loss across the filter crosses a desired set value (2.5 m)
Filtration rate drops below a set value
Turbidity breaks through the filter
Stop filter operation
Head loss or turbidity are used as the basis for filter backwash
Close filter inlet and allow filtration till water level drops below the
wash water overflow weir, but the sand bed remains submerged
Filter backwashing
Close filtered water outlet and introduce compressed air for air
scouring the bed run the compressed air for a specified duration
Open wash water outlet and introduce backwash water
stop compressed air injection (air injection and backwash water
introduction, at sub-fluidizing water flows, can overlap)
continue backwash water flow till clear water overflows the weir
Filter cycle
Air scouring during backwashing
Air scouring is very effective when water is introduced at sub-
fluidization rates along with the compressed air
air creates additional turbulence without substantially increasing of
filter bed expansion
Compressed air is used in three different modes
First only compressed air and then the backwash water
First only compressed air, then both air and backwash water (at sub-
fluidization rate), and then only backwash water (at fluidization rates)
First compressed air and backwash water (at sub-fluidization rate) and
then only backwash water (at fluidization rates)
Air scouring is a water conservation measure
Filter to waste
Stop backwash water, allow draining out of the washwater
Close wash water drain, open water inlet and open filtered water
wasting drain
Allow wastage of filtered water till desired water quality is achieved
Typical filtration cycle
Filter problems
Mud balls: Deposition of solids during backwashing instead of
washout with backwash water
Can be from poor coagulation-flocculation-settling
Can be due improper filter backwashing
Surface cracking: compressible matter around the media
surface causes the surface cracking
Media boils: can be caused by
Too rapid backwash (higher backwash velocities!)
Displacement or uneven distribution of the gravel layer
Air binding:
Excessive head loss during filter run leading to negative
pressures in the under drain system can result in air suction
Running the filter dry (filter bed exposed to air)
Improper backwashing (from shorter backwash durations,
lower backwash velocities, etc. )
Can be a cause for media boiling, loss of filter media and
inefficient filter cleaning
Filter hydraulics: During run
Two separate categories: hydraulics of filtration process and
hydraulics of filter backwashing
Carmen-Kozeny equation is used for the hydraulic analysis
of filter (Fair-Hatch equation, Rose equation and Hazen
equation can also be used)
g
V
d
L f
h
s
2
3
1
o
o
|

=
75 . 1
1
150 +

=
R
N
f
o

|
s
R
dV
N =
h is head loss through filter bed
f is friction factor (f
i
)
o is bed porosity
L is depth of filter bed
d is diameter of the media particle
d
gi
is geometric mean between sieve sizes
V
s
is superficial (approach) filtration velocity
| is particle shape factor
(1 for spherical particle
0.82 for rounded sand
0.75 for average sand
0.73 for crushed coal/angular sand)
is density and is viscosity of water
N
R
is Reynold number
p
i
is fraction of solids

=
gi
i
i
s
d
p
f
g
LV
h
2
3
1 1
o
o
|
Equation for non-uniform bed is to be used
f value will be different for different dia. particles
There are no acceptable mathematical equations for assessing
head loss changes in clogged beds
The equations are applicable for clean filter beds
Solids accumulation decrease porosity & increase head loss
Head loss change depends on Nature of the suspension,
Characteristics of the media, and Filter operation
If constant head (driving force) is applied then filtration rate will
diminish with decreasing porosity
For constant filtration rates head applied should be increased to
match with the head loss increase
Terminate filter run for backwash on sufficient solids accumulation
Storage capacity of the bed is exhausted
Driving force available is not sufficient for enough filtration rates
Filter hydraulics: during run
Direction of flow is reversed (upwards through the media)
Media bed is expanded (contact among the grains is
broken) and grain surfaces are exposed for cleaning by
hydrodynamic shear forces
rubbing action among the grains
Expansion occurs when force applied by flowing water is
greater than the buoyant weight of the grains
Head required for expansion = weight of the packed bed


Depth of expanded bed
Greater than the packed bed depth
Assuming weight of packed bed = weight of fluidized bed

( )
w
w m
f b
L h


o

= 1
f b
f b
L L
o
o

=
1
1
L
fb
is depth of the fluidized bed
o Is porosity and o
fb
is porosity of
fluidized bed
h
fb
is head loss need to initiate
bed expansion

m
is density of the medium

w
is density of water
Filter hydraulics: during backwash
Porosity of the expanded is a function of terminal settling
velocity of the particles and the backwash velocity and
given as


This relation on incorporation into the expression for
expanded bed depth



For a stratified non-uniform bed the expression will become

22 . 0
|
|
.
|

\
|
=
t
B
fb
V
V
o
22 . 0
1
1
|
|
.
|

\
|

=
t
B
f b
V
V
L L
o
V
B
is back wash velocity
V
t
is terminal settling velocity of particles
Optimum porosity for backwashing is 0.65-0.70

|
|
|
|
|
.
|

\
|
|
|
.
|

\
|

=
22 . 0
1
) 1 (
ti
B
i
f b
V
V
x
L L o
Filter hydraulics: during backwash
Optimum expansion for backwashing is
1.2 to 1.55 times of unexpanded bed
5 . 4
fB t B
V V o =
Flow Regime
Defined on the basis of Reynolds number (Re)



Four flow regimes
Darcy flow (Re<1) encountered in slow sand filters!
Forchheimer flow (Re 1-100) encountered in rapid sand
filters!
Transition flow (Re 100-800) not encountered in filtration
Fully turbulent flow (Re >800) not encountered in
filtration
w
f w
e
D V
R

=

w
is fluid density

w
is fluid dynamic viscosity
D is dia. of media grain
V
f
is superfecial velocity (filtration rate)
Flow Regime
Darcy flow
Occurs (when Re is <1) in slow sand filters and also in rapid
sand filters (when the filtration rates are lower)
Flow is governed by Darcys law


Forchheimer flow
Occurs in rapid sand filters when filtration rates are high and
during backwashing (3>Re<25)
Laminar flow (influenced by both viscous & inertial forces)
Head loss is given by
L
h
K V
L
f
=
K is hydraulic conductivity
hL is head loss across the filter
L is depth of the filter bed (granular media)
2
2 1 f f
L
V K V K
L
h
+ =
Slow Sand Filters
Slow Sand Ffilters (SSF)
History
Use of SSF dates back to 1790 in Lancashire, England (used to filter
municipal water in London in 1829)
SSF was shown to remove bacteria in 1885, and to remove Giardia
in 1980s
According to WHO, under suitable conditions, slow sand
filtration is the cheapest, the simplest and the most efficient
method of water treatment
Used for Turbidity (colloidal particles) removal, for the reduction
of bacteria, viruses, and protozoa, and also for organic levels
reduction
Used for treating low turbidity water (<20 NTU)
Water with >20 NTU turbidity requires pre-treatment (roughing
filters!) - pre-treatment may also be needed for BOD reduction
Water with >200 NTU turbidity is not at all allowed
Physical operations, and chemical and microbiological processes
may be involved in the treatment
SSF : Constituents
Includes three tanks (raw water, filter & filtered water tanks)
Filter tank includes
Supernatant water (0.5 to 1.5 m depth)
Sand (filter) bed
Granular filter medium of 0.15-0.35 effective size and 2-3
uniformity coefficient
Medium must be free from organic matter, loam and clay
Depth of the bed is >0.6 m (upto 1.6 m)
Schmudzdecke layer (a biological film or mat!)
Develops on the top of the sand bed within a few weeks, and
disturbed by cleaning, but redevelops within a few days
Filters out and/or consumes and absorbs/adsorbs organic and
inorganic contaminants including bacteria, viruses, etc.
Gravel layer: 3 grades of gravel (fine, 2-8 mm; medium size, 8-16
mm; and bottom coarse size, 6-32 mm) are used
Drainage system: bricks, concrete slabs, porous concrete,
perforated pipes and screen system
Covering of filter to avoid winter freezing and algal growth
A. Valve for raw water inlet and regulation of filtration rate
B. Valve for draining unfiltered water
C. Valve for back-filling the filter bed with clean water
D. Valve for draining filter bed and outlet chamber
E. Valve for delivering treated water to waste
F. Valve for delivering treated water to the clear-water
reservoir
SSF: Schmutzdecke layer
A bio film/mat (0.5 to 2 cm) formed on the sand bed surface
Made up of algae, bacteria, fungi and other microbes and
accumulated particulates
Full development may take a few weeks time (>4 weeks)
Proper water temp. and sufficient nutrients support development
Requires 2-7 days (even 2 to 3 weeks) for the redevelopment after
each cleaning
Filters out or consumes and absorbs/adsorbs organic and inorganic
contaminants and contributes to the reduction of bacteria, viruses
and protozoa
Reported as good for the removal of <2 m particles
Bacteriovory was reported as the significant biologically mediated
particle removal mechanism
Breaks down organics, acts as fine mechanical filter
The sand filter (the top 20 cm, even upto 0.4 to 0.5 m depth) also
shows biological activity
Slow Sand Filter
Thickness of the sand layer: >0.6 m (every additional 0.3 m thick
layer supports additional 3-4 years operation)
Oxfam filters: Geo-textile fabric is used on the top of the sand layer
for retaining much of the suspended matter strained from the
loaded water
The gravel layers can be replaced by a synthetic fabric
Below the gravel for protecting the filter tank lining, 50 mm thick sand
layer may be used
Filter must always be kept submerged in water for maintaining the
biological mat
Must not be run dry (unless complete draining out is needed)
Outlet should be slightly (50 mm) above the top of the sand layer for
keeping the filter wet and submerged
Provisions should be made to
dissipate the energy of the water loaded to the filter
drain out the supernatant water
drain out the filter bed
backfill the filter with filtered water
Slow Sand Filter
Water loaded should have <50 NTU turbidity
use pre-filter when it is >30 NTU
Filtration rate:
50 to 100 times slower than the rate for rapid gravity filter
100 to 300 L/m
2
hour (ideal: 0.2 m/hr & Max. rate:0.3 m/hr)
Filtered water has <0.3 NTU turbidity (goal is <0.1 NTU)
Filtered water may require chlorination for superior water
quality
Anaerobic conditions in the filter bed can infuse lasting bad
taste to water
Often necessitates water pre-treatment to remove organics
Water being filtered must have >3 mg/L DO
Start-up of a slow sand filter may take quite long time
Development of the biological mat Schmutzdecke takes a few
weeks time
In the water reservoir algal growth can occur
can add oxygen to water, but can interfere with the operation
Cleaning of Slow Sand Filter
Initial head loss for a clean slow sand filter is <0.2 feet
Head loss >5 feet is avoided (can lead to air binding and
uneven flow of water through the filter) through cleaning
Clogged filter (filtration rate dropped below acceptable levels)
needs cleaning
Cleaned once in every 20 to 90 days turbidity of water and
filtration rate determine the cleaning interval
Supernatant from the sand bed is drained out to below 20 cm
depth of the sand bed prior to cleaning through scraping
After scrapping, refilling the filter with water should be done
from the bottom for avoiding the air entrapment
Involves manual scraping of 2 to 5 cm of the top sand and
dsicarding
New sand is added when the sand depth drops to <24 inch (may
be once in 10 years)
Cleaning affects the filter performance for a few days
(ripening period)
After the ripening period returns to normal performance
Design parameters Recommended range of values
Filtration rate
Area per filter bed
0.15 m
3
/m
2
h (0.10.2 m
3
/m
2
h)
Less than 200 m
2
(in small community water supplies to ease
manual filter cleaning)
Number of filter beds Minimum of two beds
Depth of filter bed 1 m (minmum of 0.7 m of sand depth)
Filter media Effective size (ES) = 0.150.35 mm;
uniformity coefficient (UC) = 2-3
Height of supernatant water 0.71 m (maximum 1.5 m)
Underdrain system
Standard bricks
Precast concrete slabs
Precast concrete blocks with
holes on top
Porous concrete
Perforated pipes
Generally no need for further hydraulic
calculations.
Maximum velocity in the manifolds and in
laterals = 0.3 m/s
Spacing between laterals = 1.5 m
Spacing of holes in laterals = 0.15 m
Size of holes in laterals =3 mm
Design parameters for typical slow sand filter
Bio-sand Filter
Bio-sand filter: Maintenance
1) Remove the lid and the
colander/diffuser basin.
2) Lower the water level inside
the filter by using a small cup
to scoop out the water that
has not drained through the
outlet pipe.
3) Make a small hole in the sand
with the cup. Scoop out the
water that accumulates in it
until only wet sand remains.
4) Remove 3 to 5cm of the fine
sand layer and set it aside.
(After washing and drying in
the sun, this sand may be
reused next time maintenance
is performed.)

5) Add clean, fine sand from
previous maintenance. Level
the surface of the sand.
6) Reinstall the colander/diffuser
basin.
7) Slowly add water to the filter
until water begins to flow
through the outlet pipe again
and water is 5 cm above fine
sand layer.
8) Again remove the lid and
colander/diffuser basin
9) Level the surface of the sand
again
10) Reinstall the
colander/diffuser basin
Roughing Filters (RF)
(HRF and VRF)
Roughing Filters
A pre-treatment unit used to remove/separate fine solids that
could not be removed by sedimentation
May precede final treatment processes like SSF and chlorination
Required to reduce turbidity of water to <20 to 50 NTU prior to
filtration in slow sand filters
Removal of suspended solids require laminar flow conditions
within the filter bed (Reynolds Number: <1.0)
Also be used to remove chemical flocs prior to biol. treatment
and biological flocs prior to chlorination
Roughing filters can also support adsorption, absorption and
chemical and biological processes
Vander waals forces and electrostatic forces attract the particles
and hold on the medium surface
Biological water quality, dissolved organic matter, colour etc.,
parameters can get adjusted
Can handle very low organic loads higher loads can clog the
filter and reduce the hydraulic cleaning capacity
Roughing Filters
Broken burnt bricks, charcoal, coconut fiber, quartz sand, gravel,
charcoal, maize cobs or any other clean insoluble and mechanically
resistant material can be used as filter medium
Filter media particle size varies from >20 mm to <2 mm
Use of multi-grade filter media, with size decreasing in the flow
direction, can promote particle penetration through the filter bed
Filter incorporates a simple self cleaning (backwashing) mechanism
An under drainage system enables the filter flushing and cleaning
Flow direction is reversed through opening the downwash drains and
higher rates of flows clean the filter
Unpacking the filter media and cleaning may often be required
Performance monitoring is done using the parameters: TSS,
turbidity, colour, coliform count, iron and manganese, and algae
Mostly run in up-fow or horizontal flow regimes (VRF and HRF
systems)
Have larger capacities to store the removed solids (HRFs have
relatively larger storage capacity than VRFs)

Roughing Filters: HRF
Filtration rates for HRF may be in the range of 0.3 to 1.5 m/hr
Shallow structure and hence and hence no structural
problems
Unlimited length of the filter is possible
Usual length is 5 to 7 m
Filter is usually assembled in 3 compartments (coarse,
medium and fine medium filter phases
Filter medium size ranges from <4 mm to >20 mm
Water is maintained below to the surface of the filter bed to
shade and prevent the algal growth
HRFs are less susceptible to solids breakthrough and more
sensitive to hydraulic short-circuiting
Can handle short time turbidity loads of 500 to 1000 NTU
Drainage facilities are placed at the bottom of the filter
perpendicular to the flow direction
Drainage velocities of 60-90 m/hr are used for a good hydraulic
cleaning of the filter


Roughing Filters: VRF systems
Occupy relatively lesser floor space
Usually includes 3 or more filters arranged in series
VRF in layers (the 3 or more filters are stratified) are also used
Height of the filter bed may be 1 to 1.2 m and the filter
medium size is 12-18 mm; 8-12 mm; and 4-8 mm
Filter bed is covered (by a layer of stones (100 mm size!) for
shading the water and preventing algal growth
Bottom of the filter has drainage facilities (perforated pipes,
false filter bottom, etc.)
Operated either as down-flow or as up-flow filters (upflow
filters are recommended - VRF in layers are operated only in
upflow mode)
Filter material is maintained completely submerged in water (10
cm layer of water is maintained above the filter)
Filtration rate is usually o.3 to 1.0 m/hr
Can handle water with turbidity 50-150 NTU
Filter resistance or head loss is <20 cm per filter

Design of multistage multigrade roughing filter
Multistage (3 or more stages), multigrade filter (VRF in layers)
Divisible into the filter bed proper and the gravel support layers
Gravel support layers satisfy the condition of thickness >6 times
the size of the largest medium particle in the layer
Thickness of the filter bed layer can be much higher
Inlet conveys water into the under drain system and uniformly
distributes water for the upflow filtration
Air bubble entry into the under-drain system is avoided
Reservoir for holding enough water for the backwashing
Filtered water is drained out while keeping the filter bed
submerged
Under drain system allowing backwashing (at the rate of 40-
60 m/hr)
Filtration rate (0.3 to 1.0 m/hr)
Laminar flow conditions are ensured within the filter bed
(Rynolds number <1.0)
Scour velocities are avoided with the filter bed

Typical design of a Multistage Multigrade
Vertical flow Roughing filter