We studied the relationship between water flux of a UF membrane with MLSS, soluble COD, and the viscosity of activated sludge suspension in a human excrement treatment test plant utilizing UF membrane.

The bench-scale plate and frame UF membrane test unit was operated for activated sludge suspension of 20~29 kg/m3 MLSS, 500-730 g/m3 soluble COD and 0.38-1.3 Pa·s viscosity under the conditions of 0.2-0.24 MPa average pressure and 2 m/s recirculating velocity. As a result, stable-state water flux was 0.55-1.65 m/D at 25°C.

The relationship between filtration resistance R to transmembrane pressure drop ∆P, MLSS, COD, and viscosity η was expressed by the following equation:

From this equation, we were able to predict R with an accuracy of ±24%. Soluble COD had the largest effect on water flux followed by MLSS. The effect of viscosity was relatively small.

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