Tuesday 06 Nov 2012: Holistic modelling of Membrane Bioreactor (MBR) Process
Dr Devendra Saroj - University of Surrey
Membrane bioreactor (MBR) technology is considered among most sophisticated process technologies that have been successfully applied for high quality wastewater treatment. MBR process, designed to remove BOD and nutrients, can treat municipal wastewater up to a high level of effluent quality- with complete removal of TSS and micro-organisms. MBR produces high quality effluent with low sludge generation, but incurs high operational (energy) expenditure. Two distinct aspects of MBR process, complex microbiology and membrane filtration, require holistic framework of modelling in order to correctly describe the process dynamics and interrelation between membrane separation and activated sludge process. Extra-cellular polymeric substances (EPS) produced from microbial activity are responsible for membrane fouling in low-flux operation of MBRs. Dynamic model, adapted from Activated Sludge Model (ASM), can describe the dynamic biological treatment performance and biomass production; and EPS based fouling model can describe the fouling trend during low-flux operation of MBRs. With the help of integrated and holistic modelling frame work it would be possible to model the MBR processes capable to correctly simulating the biological treatment and fouling behaviour; this will help in improving the operation and control of MBRs for high quality wastewater treatment and reuse.