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  1. The Venturi Aeration Process: Understanding Oxygen Transfer and Wastewater Conditioning Venturi Aeration, Inc. 41 Tallant Road Pelham, NH 03076-2236 603-635-8239

  2. Oxygen Transfer Basics • There are various wastewater characteristics that affect the amount of Oxygen that gets dissolved in wastewater: • Soluble salts (TDS), particulate (TSS), surface active substances (algae, O&G), temperature, atm pressure, et. al.

  3. Oxygen Transfer Basics - 2 • Additionally, the solubility of oxygen is also impacted by other mechanical and kinetic properties: • Tank geometry (circular, rectangular, square, etc.; rounded corners, conical bottom, height of tank, material of construction, in-ground, above ground, etc. • Type of aeration device, • Intensity of mixing (Reynolds Number)

  4. Oxygen Transfer Basics - 3 • Two Predominant Oxygen Transfer Models: • 1. Buoyancy Transfer Model - Diffusers release an air bubble at the bottom of the tank using the surface area of the bubble to transfer oxygen, (design variables) and • 2. Kinetic Transfer Model - using mechanical energy to transfer oxygen into a liquid.

  5. Oxygen Transfer Basics - 4 • Two Film Theory of Oxygen Transfer: the rate of oxygen (gas) transfer is proportional to the difference between the existing concentration of the gas and the equilibrium of the gas in solution. • This means that as a gas approaches equilibrium it encounters greater resistance at the interface of the liquid and the gas, thus reducing the solubility of the gas.

  6. Oxygen Transfer Basics - 5 • The Standard Oxygen Transfer Rating (SOTR) is a unit of measurement that quantifies the “oxygen” transfer efficiency of a specific type of aeration device using either a “Buoyancy” or “Kinetic” oxygen transfer model. • The Standard is maintained by the ASCE and all testing is done in “Clear Water.”

  7. Oxygen Transfer Basics - 6 • Because the ASCE testing is done in clear water (low TDS, TSS, etc.) there are three (3) values that are used to correct for the wastewater characteristics to develop an AOTR (Actual O2 Transfer Rating): • The alpha()value corrects for the type of aeration device, tank geometry, intensity of mixing.

  8. Oxygen Transfer Basics - 7 • The beta () value corrects for soluble salts (TDS), particulate (TSS), surface active substances, etc. • The theta () value adjusts for the solubility of oxygen at specific temperatures. • All aeration devices have a standard SOTE however, their values must be adjusted for the above three values for an AOTR.

  9. Various Kinetic Transfer Model Mechanical Aeration Devices’SOTE • Following are various AOTR’s for mechanical aeration devices: lbs. O2/hp/hr • Venturi Aerator 2.73 -3.06 • Surface aerator w/draft tube 1.2 - 2.1 • Surface high speed 1.2 - 2.0 • Submerged turbine 1.0 - 2.0 • Submerged turbine/sparger 1.2 - 1.8 • Surface brush and blade 0.8 - 1.8

  10. The Venturi Aeration Process • The venturi aeration process has a high oxygen transfer efficiency because of the following factors: • High Gas / Liquid ratio: 2.2 : 1.0 • Intensity of mixing is internal in the device’s mixing & oxidizing zone. • Constant supply of an oxygen-deficient film to overcome the resistance of a partially oxygenated liquid (Two film theory).

  11. The Venturi Aeration Process - 2 • Kinetic force of the discharge is used for mixing and equalization (2 fps). The best use of this feature is in a circular tank. • Stripping substances with weak Henry’s constants, e.g. CO2 and VOCs. • Oxidizing sulfur-containing molecules, e.g. hydrogen sulfide and -mercaptans for effective odor and corrosion control.

  12. The Venturi Aeration Process - 3 • Degassing of gases imbedded in organic materials enhances settling of solids in clarifiers. • Large amounts of induced DO cause fats, oils, and grease to hydrolyze and float for skimming. • By stripping CO2 pH is raised allowing for nitrification (pH >6.8) to begin.

  13. Interdependence of pH, Alkalinity and CO2 • A formula for pH showing the interdependence of pH, alkalinity and carbon dioxide: • pH = 6.35 + log(alkalinity/carbon dioxide)

  14. The Venturi Aeration Process - 4 • BOD Reduction, the large amounts of DO immediately allow BOD reduction begin. • The venturi nozzle has a pressure differential that causes organic materials to break apart (implosion) which increases their surface area making them more readily available for microbial digestion.

  15. Applications of the Venturi Aerator • Collection system (lift stations for odor and corrosion control, and BOD reduction). • Headworks for sludge separation - enhances settling and performance of the primary clarifier. • Septage Receiving - for odor control, BOD reduction, degassing H2S and “shearing” organic materials.

  16. Explanation of BOD5 Reduction Rates In Septage • 1. Reduction in BOD5 for fine bubble ceramic diffusers in septage with air from blower (EPA data). • 2. Reductionof BOD5 for pure Oxygen through fine bubble ceramic diffuser in 1. Above (EPA data). • 3. Reduction in BOD5 for venturi aerator using ambient air. (GLSD data 1993) Note: the same reduction curve as Pure Oxygen thru diffusers.

  17. Applications of the Venturi Aerator - 2 • Mixing and Equalization • Supernatant aeration from digesters • Landfill leachate aeration prior to headworks. • Oil & Grease Recovery. • Effluent aeration to streams or wetlands. • Stripping PCE, TCE, etc. from industrial wastestreams and groundwater. • Lagoon aeration with two zones.

  18. Applications of the Venturi Aerator - 3 • Pre-aeration in front of SBRs, RBCs, Bioclere/FAST trickling filters to protect zoogloeal mass from toxic shock, reduce temperature (+DO), adjust pH and achieve BOD reduction. • Used as a venturi DAF application by discharging into stilling well (DO >12.5). • Bioreactors for degradation of difficult substances (e.g. HCHO, acetone, etc.)

  19. Applications of the Venturi Aerator - 4 • Aerobic Sludge Digesters • Augment or enhance DAF systems during summer months.

  20. Design Considerations • Start with total oxygen demand required for desired reductions and sizing unit(s). • Determine what features need to be factored into the design. • Flooded or lift suction. • Location of equipment. • Use of Gorman-Rupp self-priming pumps.

  21. Summary • The venturi aeration process is simple, easy to install into existing systems, has no moving parts. • The mechanical energy is derived from the pump accelerating the liquid through the venturi nozzle creating the vacuum to aspirate ambient air into process liquid. • The venturi aeration process provides many enhancements to existing wastewater treatment systems and their performance.