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Rethink Biostimulants White Paper

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It's Time to Rethink Biostimulants Probiotic Solutions® Wastewater Treatment with MICRO CARBON TECHNOLOGY™ Proven & Effective Since 1989 A Powerful and Proven Strategy to Cut Wastwater Treatment Costs There are many wastewater treatment plants whose microbes are starving - suffering from nutrient deficiencies. As a result, operational problems arise with inefficient waste stabilization. Signs of nutrient deficiency include: sludge bulking, foaming, poor settleability, inefficient removal of suspended solids, excess sludge accumulation, and inefficient removal of BOD5 and COD. (Wastewater Biology; The Life Process, WEF, 1994) Laboratory studies on a range of effluents have established that industrial wastes are not nutritionally balanced for optimal wastewater treatment. (Wheatley et al., 1988) Wastewater microbes need adequate nutrition to thrive, metabolize, grow, and pass their genes to the next generation. This happens more or less efficiently in wastewater treatment plants depending on the condition of the wastewater to be treated. Each microbe has a specific function to perform to further nutrient cycling and Nature's own "self purification" cycle. Each mineral and vitamin essential to the growth and metabolism of the microbe also has a unique and specific function to perform. When a nutritional deficiency occurs in the reactor of a wastewater treatment plant, metabolic inefficiencies set in and wastewater treatment effectiveness suffers with problems like foaming, bulking, poor settleability, and excess solids accumulation. The influence of limiting nutrients applies to aerobic and anaerobic wastewater treatment plants alike. "In nutrient limited activated sludge plants the effluent BOD concentration can be several times higher than in nutrient balanced systems". (Grau, P., 1994). In anaerobic systems, trace nutrient deficiencies will lead to increased volatile fatty acids which depresses pH, increases BOD, and solids accumulation, and severely limits the overall treatment efficiency. "...Adequate trace metal bioavailability and sulfide presence must always be guaranteed for anaerobic biotransformation of wastewater. Every case of elevated volatile acids in an anaerobic effluent should be considered a potential case of trace metal deficiency..."(Speece, R.E., 1996) Nutritional deficiency in a wastewater treatment plant is expressed by this simple Monod Equation: U = Umax Specific Growth Rate, U The influence of a single limiting nutrient: S Ks + S U = specific growth rate; Umax = maximum specific growth rate, d-1; S = limiting nutrient concentration, mg/1; and Ks = half saturation constant, mg/l. Umax When nutrients are deficient growth rate becomes limited 0.5Umax Ks Limiting Nutrient Concentration, S (Source: Rich, L.G., 1999) Where proper nutrition exists, a wider variety of different microbial species will work together to further efficient nutrient cycling for more complete stabilization of waste. "Limiting or deficient [nutrient] concentrations may shift the population in favor of those organisms requiring less of the element or those organisms more capable of assimilating trace elements in extremely dilute solutions". (Wood & Tchobanoglaus, 1995) Nutritional deficiencies will lead to operational problems like bulking, foaming, poor solids removal, and inefficient BOD5 removal.

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