Activated Sludge Operations

October 15, 17, 22 and 24 (4 hours first 3 days, 2 hours last day) - 14 hours Total, 1.4 CEUs

Note: All sessions will be recorded as on-demand recordings. Registrants will be provided access based on request.

Activated Sludge Outline

This course is structured for operators and managers of activated sludge plants. It is operations oriented providing practical information to use in day-to-day operations. Using a practical approach, operating plants are used to relate actual operations during the discussion on the workshop topics. Participants will apply their newly gained knowledge in solving the case history during the last day. Participants will receive an operations manual for activated sludge treatment systems.

Overview of Wastewater Treatment

· Composition of Wastewater - types of solids, organics
· Preliminary Treatment - screening, equalization
· Primary Treatment - settleable solids vs. suspended solids removal
· Secondary Treatment - conversion of organics, solids capture
· Sludge Treatment - thickening, dewatering, disposal

Primary Treatment (not in Refinery Webinar)

· Solids Capture and Efficiency
· Negative Impacts from Primary on Secondary Treatment

Overview of Biological Treatment

· Bacterial growth - metabolism, respiration, growth phases
· Growth Pressures: F/M, Temp., pH, dissolved oxygen, nutrients, toxics, hydraulic loading

Activated Sludge Process Control Tests

· Settlometer - measuring sludge settling characteristics
· Depth of blanket - determining clarifier inventory and sludge detention time
· Microscope - assessing microbial health/composition
· Oxygen uptake - assessing metabolic rates; toxicity detection; shock loads
· Process monitoring

Controlling Return Sludge Flow

· RSF strategies
· Optimizing clarifier capacity
· Controlling clarifier inventory

Controlling Waste Sludge Flow

· MCRT/Sludge age
· F/M
· Sludge yield
· Controlling sludge inventory
· Wasting strategies

Controlling Aeration

· Monitoring, D.O. probes
· Mixing
· Oxygen demand - organic, nitrification, endogenous respiration
· D.O. deficiency

Nutrient Management

° Nutrients - ammonia, phosphorus, various types used
° Nitrogen - managing considerations
° Nitrification/Denitrification
° Nutrient management plan

Troubleshooting Overview of Activated Sludge Problems

· Poor floc formation
· Foaming
· Rising sludge
· Toxicity
· Rapid settling, turbid effluent
· Slime bulking
· Filamentous. bulking


Rick Marshall is a registered professional engineer and Grade VII (MA) certified operator with over 44 years of experience providing servics to hundreds of municipal, pulp & paper, food and beverage, chemical and refinery treatment systems. These services include:process training, process troubleshooting, treatment system optimization, treatment plant audits, plant design reviews foroperability, and O&M documentation (O&M manuals, SOPs)

Steve Leach is owner of Leach Microbial Consulting with over 34 years of experience in wastewater biology. He has worked throughout the world with municipal, pulp & paper, food and beverage, chemical and refinery treatment systems evaluating their microbiology and relating it to plant operations.

Registration Fee: $450 USD for webinar series. Group discount of 20% available for 2 or more

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