Technologies for reducing sludge production in wastewater treatment plants: State of the art

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Wang, Qilin
Wei, Wei
Gong, Yanyan
Yu, Qiming
Li, Qin
Sun, Jing
Yuan, Zhiguo
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2017
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This review presents the state-of-the-art sludge reduction technologies applied in both wastewater and sludge treatment lines. They include chemical, mechanical, thermal, electrical treatment, addition of chemical un-coupler, and predation of protozoa/metazoa in wastewater treatment line, and physical, chemical and biological pretreatment in sludge treatment line. Emphasis was put on their effect on sludge reduction performance, with 10% sludge reduction to zero sludge production in wastewater treatment line and enhanced TS (total solids) or volatile solids removal of 5–40% in sludge treatment line. Free nitrous acid (FNA) technology seems good in wastewater treatment line but it is only under the lab-scale trial. In sludge treatment line, thermal, ultrasonic (< 4400 kJ/kg TS), FNA pretreatment and temperature-phased anaerobic digestion (TPAD) are promising if pathogen inactivation is not a concern. However, thermal pretreatment and TPAD are superior to other pretreatment technologies when pathogen inactivation is required. The new wastewater treatment processes including SANI®, high-rate activated sludge coupled autotrophic nitrogen removal and anaerobic membrane bioreactor coupled autotrophic nitrogen removal also have a great potential to reduce sludge production. In the future, an effort should be put on the effect of sludge reduction technologies on the removal of organic micropollutants and heavy metals.

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Science of the Total Environment
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587-588
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Environmental biotechnology not elsewhere classified
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