Ozone use for Wastewater Disinfection

Wastewater Disinfection

Ozone used for wastewater disinfection has the potential to lower/eliminate chemical additions into water providing for a green solution and save you money.  Ozone is a powerful oxidant that will provide excellent disinfection to any water stream.  The oxidation potential of ozone is greater than that of all other chemicals used for wastewater disinfection.

Ozone ws initially utilized for disinfection of drinking water starting back in 1906.(history of ozone use)  The use of ozone for wastewater disinfection did not gain attention until the early 1970’s.  By 1984 there were 43 operational municipal wastewater treatment plants utilizing ozone for disinfection in the United States alone.  However, the implementation of ozone in large scale municipal plants stagnated after about 1985.  This was due mostly to the low cost of chlorine, and the lack of regulation on chlorine residuals in water.

Ozone use for wastewater disinfection has again gained attention in recent years.  Ozone is again becoming cost effective and necessary for three main reasons.

  • Chemical costs have increased dramatically in recent years.  Handling costs, storage costs, and cost of the raw chemical have created a for a high cost for traditional chlorine and even chlorine dioxide.  This has allowed ozone to become a more cost effective solution.
  • Regulations are getting tougher to meet with traditional chemicals.  Regulations on e.coli, and coliform bacteria are becoming lower and lower in most every state in the nation, and even worldwide.  Combine this with lower discharge limits on residual chlorine.  This requires higher chemical usage for chlorine removal from water after disinfection.  These lower discharge limits for bacteria, and chlorine create an atmosphere where ozone is very cost competitive, and may be the only viable option for some treatment facilities.
  • Micro-pollutants, or Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals (EDC’s) are becoming a major concern in rivers and lakes where wastewater is discharged.  Ozone orAdvanced Oxidiation Processes (AOP) are proving to be the only viable option for removal of these contaminates in wastewater.

Add to these primary factors that ozone is a green technology that may reduce overall energy consumption and chemical residual in water and ozone looks very attractive for many plants.  Both municipal wastewater treatment plants, and industrial plants, such as meat packing plants have been investing in ozone systems for wastewater disinfection in recent years.

Learn more about ozone and wastewater treatment HERE.

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