Wednesday, November 13 • 2:15pm - 2:45pm
Session B - Biofiltration Technology for Drinking Water: Can it be a Stand-Alone Treatment Equipment?

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Based on our knowledge and experience, biological treatment technology as a ‘stand-alone’ process to meet desired drinking water quality was less understood. This presentation overviews the process feasibility and design and evaluates the performance of ‘stand-alone’ biological filters at low-temperature groundwater. Groundwater source (4-5 °C) at a small community in Saskatchewan contains ammonia (NH3), iron (Fe), and manganese (Mn) at concentrations of 1.05 mg/L, 1.15 mg/L, and 0.15 mg/L, respectively. Previously, greensand filters with potassium permanganate as an oxidant were in operation to remove Fe and Mn. Higher chlorine demand was observed in this treatment process to convert ammonia, and to achieve break-point chlorination. To avoid the excessive chemical dosing, stand-alone biofiltration was proposed to achieve simultaneous removal of Fe, Mn, and NH4+ from the low-temperature groundwater. The ‘stand-alone’ biofiltration process was opted for the given water source based on its total dissolved solids (TDS) concentration (~500 mg/l). Process feasibility was evaluated through pilot-scale field testing, where the groundwater source at Beauval FN passed through a two-column-in-series biofilter at a targeted flux rate of 3.2 USGPM/ft2. Iron and manganese removal was commendable with little to no acclimation period at the targeted flux rate. Ammonia removal was slower through the biofilters due to low influent temperatures and had an acclimation period close to three months. Illumina-Miseq based 16S rRNA sequencing of pilot-scale biofilter samples revealed an enrichment of bacterial populations that support biological Fe, Mn, and NH4+ oxidation. Implementing the pilot-concept in to a full-scale unit at Beauval FN has achieved consistent and targeted ‘simultaneous’ removal of Fe, Mn, and NH4+ from the low-temperature groundwater. This ‘stand-alone’ biofilter design at Beauval FN has produced water quality that meets Canadian drinking water guidelines and has demonstrated this process design can be a feasible approach for other full-scale applications.


Babak Roshani

Delco Water division of Delco Automation

Wednesday November 13, 2019 2:15pm - 2:45pm
Double Tree by Hilton 16615 109th Avenue North West, Edmonton, Alberta,