Application of Low Pressure Reverse Osmosis Membranes for the treatment of UASB effluent

Innes, Peter
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University of Guelph

Research was completed on the performance of low energy reverse osmosis membranes for the treatment of Upflow Anaerobic Sludge Bioreactor (UASB) effluent with the goal of water reuse. The parameters studied were included the flux profile, constituent rejection, and membrane resistance changes. An investigation into the effectiveness of pre-treatment by GAC column and a study of fouling characteristics was also completed. Wastewater was taken from an industrial partner who operated an industrial scale UASB used to treat is brewery effluent. The studied RO membranes showed between 94-96% COD rejection, 93-96% TP rejection, and 68-80% TN rejection. The effluent quality met the reused guidelines put forth by the US EPA, however limits found in case studies suggest that the effluent quality is high in both salinity and COD. A GAC column was found to improve the flux and rejection of all membranes. Calcium was identified as the main inorganic foulant.

Reverse Osmosis, UASB, Water Reuse