There are two end products obtained from various wastewater treatment plant: (1)Effluent:The treated effluent is directly discharged either in the receiving water or

on the land

(2)Sludge:The sludges are to be first

processed before their final disposal
Objectives of processing sludge are to extract

water from solids and dispose the dewatered
residue through a combination of physical chemical and biological operations

It includes following unit operation

1.Thickening or Concentration 2. Digestion 3. Conditioning 4. Dewatering 5. Drying 6. Incineration

The purpose of thickening is to reduce

moisture content of the sludge and
consequently to increase the solids concentration Three types of thickening are as follows I. Gravity thickening II. Air floatation III. Centrifugation

Gravity thickening
It is the most common practice for concentration of sludges. It is the simplest and least expensive. It is useful for primary sludge or combined primary and activated sludge but is not useful for activated sludge independently. It is not effective when the activated sludge exceeds 40% of the total sludge

Centrifugal thickening
It is used both to thicken and to dewater sludges. It involves the settling of sludge particles under the influence of centrifugal forces.
The basic type of centrifuge used for sludge thickening is the solid-bowl centrifuge.

Solid-bowl centrifuge
It consists of long bowl mounted horizontally and tapered at one end. Sludge introduce into the unit continuously, and the solids concentrate on the periphery, an internal helical scroll, spinning at a slightly different speed and accumulated sludge towards the tapered end where additional solids concentration occurs and the thickened sludge is discharged.

Cover Different ial speed gear box

Feed ports

Rotating bowl

Main drive sheave

Centrate discharge port Rotating conveyer Centrate Thickened solids

Feed solids Thickened solids dicharge port

(Schematic diagram of a centrifuge used for sludge thickening)

Sludge digestion is a biochemical
phenomenon involving organisms, enzymes, food and environment.

1. Anaerobic digestion
2. Aerobic digestion

1.Anaerobic digestion
It is the oldest process used for stabilization of solids and biosolids. It involves the decomposition of organic matter and inorganic matter in the absence of molecular oxygen.

I.Single stage high rate digestion
Heating, auxiliary mixing, uniform feeding and thickening of the feed stream characterise the single stage high rate digestion process. The sludge is mixed by gas recirrculation, pumping and sludge is heated to achieve optimum digestion rate.

Two stage digestion
In this system a high rate digester is coupled in series with a second tank. The first tank is used for digestion and is heated and equipped with mixing facilities.

The second tank is usually unheated and used principally for storage. Tanks may have fixed roofs or floating covers.
This type of digestion is seldom used because of expanse of building a large tank that is not fully utilized and because the second tank was of negligible benefit

2.Aerobic digestion
It is used to treat
1. Waste activated sludge 2. Mixtures of waste activated sludge and primary sludge

3. Waste sludge from extented aeration plants.

Advantages of aerobic digestion as compared to anaerobic digestion
1. Lower BOD Concentrations in supernatant liquor. 2. Production of an odorless, biologically stable end products. 3. Recovery of more of the basic fertilizer values in the sludge. 4. Operation is relatively easy. 5. Lower capital cost. 6. Suitability for digesting nutrient rich biosolids.

It improves the drainability of digested sludge.It is more amenable to dewatering. It can be achieved by various method such as elutriation, chemical conditioning, heat treatment,freezing etc.

4. Dewatering
It is a physical unit operation used to reduced the moisture content of sludge and biosolids. Various methods used in dewatering device for removing moisture are 1. Mechanical dewatering devices 2. Physical devices

Mechanical dewatering devices are used to dewater the sludge more quickly The physical device include filtration squeezing, capillary action, centrifugal separation and compaction. Because of the improved design and performance of solid-bowl centrifuges, imperforate basket centrifuge are seldom used in new dewatering installation.

The selection of dewatering device is determined by the type of sludge to be dewatered, characteristic of the dewatered product and the space available.The dewatering process that are commonly used include centrifuges , belt filter presses, drying beds and lagoons.

5. Heat drying
It involves the application of heat to evaporate water and to reduce the moisture content of biosolids below that achievable by conventional dewatering methods advantage of this method is to reduce product transportation costs, improved storage capability, and marketabilty. Heat drying methods 1. Convection 2. Conduction 3. Radiation

In radiation drying systems, infrared lamps, electric resistance elements supply radiant energy that transfers to the wet sludge and evaporates moistrues. Radiation heat transfers is expressed as follows qrad=CsAσ (Tr4-Ts4)
Cs=radiation heat-transfer rate A=Emmisity of drying surface σ=Stefan-Boltzmann constant Tr=absolute temp. of radiant source Ts=Absolute temp. of the sludge drying surface

Rotary sludge dryer
Hot gasses

Rotary dryer


Exhaust gas to odor control/of f gas destructio n system



Feed sludge

Dried biosolids


Recycled product

Schematic diagram

Dried biosolids to reuse

6. Incineration
It involves the combustion of the sludge in a reactor under high temperature along with auxiliary fuels. The purpose of incineration is to destroy the organic material, the residual ash being generally useful as land fill. During the process all the gasses released from the sludge are burnt off an all the organism are destroyed. Cyclone or multiple hearth and flash type furnaces are used with proper heating arrangement with temp. control and drying mechanism.

Various methods for incineration
1. Multiple hearth incineration 2.Fluidized bed incineration 3.Coincineration with multiple solid base

Air Pollution control
Incineration method for waste water sludge have the potential to be siginificant contributors to air polltion. Air contemenents associated with incineration can be divided into to categories:
1. Odors 2. Combustion emissions


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