Chemical mixing facilities should be designed to provide a thorough and complete dispersal of chemical throughout the wastewater being treated to insure uniform exposure to pollutants which are to be removed. The intensity and duration of mixing of coagulants with wastewater must be controlled to avoid overmixing or undermixing. Overmixing excessively disperses newly-formed floe and may rupture existing wastewater solids. Excessive floe dispersal retards effective flocculation and may significantly increase the flocculation period needed to obtain good settling properties. The rupture of incoming wastewater solids may result in less efficient removals of pollutants associated with those solids. Undermixing inadequately disperses coagulants resulting in uneven dosing. This in turn may reduce the efficiency of solids removal while requiring unnecessarily high coagulant dosages. In water treatment practice several types of chemical mixing units are typically used. These include high-speed mixers, in-line blenders and pumps, and baffled mixing compartments or static in-line mixers (baffled piping sections). An example of a high-speed mixer is shown in Figure 8. Designs usually call for a 10 to 30 second detention times and approximately 300 fps/ft velocity gradient. Variablespeed mixers are recommended to allow varying requirements for optimum mixing. In mineral addition to biological wastewater treatment systems, coagulants may be added directly to mixed biological reactors such as aeration tanks or rotating biological contactors. Based on typical power inputs per unit tank volume, mechanical and diffused aeration equipment and rotating fixed-film biological contactors produce average shear intensities generally in the range suitable for chemical mixing. Localized maximum shear intensities vary widely depending on the speed of rotating equipment or on bubble size for diffused aeration.
DRIVE MECHANISM -i
DRIVE MECHANISM -i
Figure 8. Example of an impeller mixer.
The proper measure of flocculation effectiveness is the performance of subsequent solids separation units in terms of both effluent quality and operating requirements, such as filter backwash frequency. Effluent quality depends greatly on the reduction of residual primary size particles during flocculation, while operating requirements relate more to the floe volume applied to separation units.
Flocculation units should have multiple compartments and should be equipped with adjustable speed mechanical stirring devices to permit meeting changed conditions. In spite of simplicity and low maintenance, non-mechanical, baffled basins are undesirable because of inflexibility, high head losses, and large space requirements. Mechanical flocculators may consist of rotary, horizontal-shaft reel units as shown in Figure 9.
Rotary vertical shaft turbine units as shown in Figure 10 and other rotary or reciprocating equipment are other examples. Tapered flocculation may be obtained by varying reel or paddle size on horizontal common shaft units or by varying speed on units with separate shafts and drives. In applications other than coagulation with alum or iron salts, flocculation parameters may be quite different. Lime precipitates are granular and benefit little from prolonged flocculation.
Polymers which already have a long chain structure may provide a good floe at low mixing rates. Often the turbulence and detention in the clarifier inlet distribution is adequate.
Figure 10. Mechanical flocculator vertical shaft-paddle type water pressure lubricated u-p ' 1 -1 • • ' i
Figure 10. Mechanical flocculator vertical shaft-paddle type
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