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Environmentally Sustainable Beneficiation of Brewery Effluent
Expanded Title:The HRAP/wetland system is an environmentally sustainable method of treating brewery effluent that allows for the recovery of water and nutrients from the wastewater. It is a low-energy, low maintenance system (both biologically and physically), driven mainly by gravity and the sun’s energy. The only external energy inputs for HRAP system were two small (0.45 kW) motors that drove the paddlewheels. As such, the cost to build and operate the system could be recovered quickly and the potential exists to recover these costs even faster if the water and nutrients that are recovered are reused or sold. The HRAP and wetland system consistently brought most water quality parameters tested here to within or close to the DWA general limits for the discharge of industrial effluent into a natural water resource. A model was developed that made it possible to predict the success of this system under various conditions that might be applied to other industries. Furthermore, the treatment/recovery process involved the production of downstream products such as algae, fish feed, fresh vegetables and healthy fish. This program also saw the first attempt at optimising the use of industrial effluent as an inorganic source of fertiliser for hydroponic vegetable production. Fish and vegetable production can take place using post-HRAP water, or water that has been subject to both HRAP and CW treatment. The CW did not require pre-treatment in the HRAP and operated more efficiently when HRAP was not included in the treatment chain; however, it was not possible to exclude the primary facultative pond (PFP) prior to treatment in the CW. The advantage of the wetland is that it is entirely self-sustaining but is difficult to clean/recharge, may clog up over time and takes more time to commission, whereas the HRAP can be inoculated and fully functional within days. The downside of the HRAP/CW system is that it takes up considerably more space than conventional methods of water treatment, such as activated sludge systems, for example. The estimated area required to treat 1000 m3 of post-AD brewery effluent per day is probably around 1.4 to 2.0 ha. However, with improved efficiency and optimisation this footprint might be further reduced. The program has successfully demonstrated that industrial effluent, which is currently considered a costly liability by most industries, can be turned into a job-creating, income-generating stream, using simple technologies that have been available for years.
Date Published:01/07/2014
Document Type:Research Report
Document Subjects:Wastewater Management - Industrial, Sanitation - On site sanitation
Document Keywords:Environment
Document Format:Report
Document File Type:pdf
Research Report Type:Technical
WRC Report No:TT 601/14
ISBN No:978-1-4312-0557-8
Authors:Jones CLW; Britz PJ; Scheepers R; Cilliers A; Laubscher R
Project No:K5/2008
Organizations:Rhodes University
Document Size:4 718 KB
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