Operating Experience with Rotating Membrane Bioreactors
Article from "WaterWorld", March 2009
Hans Huber AG, based in Berching, Germany, introduced a novel rotating flat sheet membrane bioreactor (MBR) to the wastewater treatment market in 2002. In the years since, the system has been installed in 20 municipal and industrial wastewater treatment plants worldwide.
The company's Vacuum Rotation Membrane (VRM®) technology offers lower energy demand through sequential cleaning, simplified operation, and reduced pretreatment needs. The rotating flat sheet membranes operate with extended chemical cleaning intervals due to the shear forces introduced by the rotational movement. These shear forces together with the high intensity air scour remove any solids build-up on the membranes, which helps reduce membrane fouling potential. Chemical cleaning once or twice a year has shown to be sufficient for all operating VRM plants.
Operational performance has demonstrated the system's ability to meet the world's most stringent regulations, including California's Title 22 water recycling criteria.
Energy consumption for membrane air scouring is a significant operating cost for any membrane bioreactor facility. Huber's rotational design allows for a significant reduction of the amount of scouring air needed to prevent membrane fouling. In addition, the scouring air is introduced at only half the water depth which reduces the air pressure and thus the blower's power consumption. This design has proven to be reliable and has led to considerable savings in operating and maintenance costs.
The complete article contains detailed case studies on:
- Low Temperature Project
- Protecting a Drinking Water Source
- Rendering Plant Wastewater
- A Fast Solution for a Tourist Resort