Effective effluent treatment for food and beverage plants

An effluent treatment system now available in Australasia for food and beverage manufacturing applications has demonstrated its effectiveness in service with a one of the largest wineries in California’s Napa county.

The TITAN MBR™ system by Smith & Loveless Inc — represented in Australia by CST wastewater solutions — was installed by the Hess Collection Winery, which produces 500,000 cases a year. Wastewater generates from three primary activities: wine crushing, warehousing and barrel washing. During crush season (typically September through November), wastewater streams increase in flow and strength, up to 15,000 gpd with constituents of 8,000 mg/l BOD and 1,000 mg/l TSS.

When the nearby city of American Canyon established new wastewater limits for industrial users connected to its city system, Hess began exploring options for pretreatment, including re-circulating sand filters. When filter piloting didn’t meet the city’s prescribed limits of 200 mg/l BOD and 220 mg/l TSS, Hess turned to Summit Engineering for an engineered treatment system solution.

Summit reviewed the winery’s flow data, site requirements and then contacted Smith & Loveless. Upon review, Smith & Loveless proposed two TITAN MBR™ Systems, the second unit designed to handle crush season flows and strengths. Each system maintains a peak design flow of 7,500 gpd and integrates complete flow equalization, sludge holding, clear well and aeration.

The aeration basin comes equipped with TITAN MBR™ flat-plate membranes and fine bubble diffusers for efficient operation and oxygen transfer. (A 3 mm screen ahead of the plant collects residual solids and material from the winemaking process). The system’s air supply, comprised of two operating units and one stand-by blower, features an acoustic package to keep noise levels low and variable frequency drives (VFDs) to control oxygen input into the tank during the seasonal changes in waste strength.

Smith & Loveless also provided complete PLC controls for each unit. Each panel features an HMI interface for easy inspection and control. The PLC monitors the flow through the entire system, tank levels (via pressure sensors), transmembrane pressure (TMP), membrane flux, temperature, pH, and dissolved oxygen levels. Monitoring TMP and flux are especially helpful in analyzing membrane performance, including for initiating the cleaning cycle on a quarterly to semi-annual basis.

When membrane cleaning is required, the system’s clean-in-place (CIP) system initiates an efficient, hassle-free chemical addition. As the name indicates, the membranes do not require removal from the aeration zone, instead they remain stationary while chemicals are back-flushed through the membrane module.

Cleaning takes less than one day, and on average, will range between 2-4 hours. During cleaning, the aeration basin does not require draining and any incoming flow is stored in the aerated flow equalization zone.

“The Hess Collection Winery now features one of the first MBRs installed at a domestic winery, setting a new trend in best practices,” says CST Wastewater solutions Managing Director Mr Michael Bambridge. TITAN MBR™ effluent will easily surpass the municipal guidelines set by American Canyon while its robust membrane design will stand the test of time with a more durable construction than hollow fibre membranes

“Wastewater has become a critical issue worldwide in the wine, beverage and food manufacturing industries as water increases in value and effluent standards become ever more stringent,” says Mr Bambridge.

“The ongoing drought in many wine and food growing areas is encouraging water recycling. At the same time, producers are facing financial incentives to upgrade the quality of used water they discharge into sewers or put back into the soil.

“With a fully professional treatment system in place, wine and food manufacturers can recycle as much as possible of their wastewater, meeting tough effluent standards and reducing their water bills,” he said.

For more than two decades, CST Wastewater Solutions has been installing effluent purification systems in Australia and New Zealand industry, solving problems associated with seasonal production peaks, groundwater seepage, septic overloads and stringent permit regulations.

CST Wastewater Solutions supplies three major types of on-site effluent treatment systems for food producers, designed to handle large, medium or small wastewater flows.

· For corporate and large production wineries and food manufacturers, the Model R OXIGEST provides a complete wastewater system with concentric tankage. This extended aeration system is designed for flows from 375 cubic metres per day (cmd) to 11,000-plus cmd.

· For system flows of 20-11,000-plus cmd, the award-winning TITAN MBR is a complete membrane bioreactor (MBR) tailored to the wastewater issues facing the wine, beverage and food manufacturing industries. It delivers the highest quality effluent for these applications. TITAN MBR utilises flat plate membranes for the simplest operation and maintenance in MBR technology. The membranes eliminate the need for a clarifier and for tertiary filtration.

· FAST (Fixed Activated Sludge Treatment) is ideal for winery and food manufacturing effluent from 20 to 375 cmd. It employs patented fixed-film media to cope with seasonal or variable flows, maintaining stable operation while minimising space use and maintenance requirements. Smaller, modular FAST systems can be buried in the ground, for both convenience and aesthetics. FAST and TITAN systems are a continuing evolution of prefabricated and portable wastewater treatment plants that Smith & Loveless pioneered in Australia and around the world some decades ago. Both are activated sludge treatment systems that provide the benefits of modular design and construction, low sludge production, few moving parts, low maintenance and systemic robustness.

These systems are now proven in hundreds of Australasian installations, ranging from municipal and private developments to industrial and commercial sectors, as well as specialised marine use. CST Wastewater Solutions’ broad range of proprietary wastewater treatment equipment — which is manufactured to ISO9001 and EEC standards of safety and design — includes:

Water and wastewater screening; Grit removal and dewatering; Septic receival stations; Dissolved air flotation; Sedimentation systems and clarifiers; Shaftless conveyors; Sludge dewatering; Lime handling; and silo systems; Continuous sand filters; Microfilters and screens; Solar-powered circulation; UV disinfection; Ozone treatment; Anaerobic treatment.

The company also provides expert assistance with equipment and system selection, design, installation and maintenance, as well as operation of wastewater treatment systems and delivery of complete packaged plants.

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