Rheological behaviour of filamentous sludges originated from activated sludge reactors was studied. Filamentous bulking was detected via a hysteresis loop developed from rheograms resulting from increasing-decreasing shear rates. The rheological parameter reduced hysteresis area (rHa), corresponding to the loop area developed by rheograms was used to quantify filamentous bulking. Application to the evolution of several bulkings was carried out and it was shown that filaments proliferation and disappearance were correlated with, respectively, the increasing and decreasing of the value of the parameter rHa. In parallel with rheological measurement, parameters used for the study of sludge quality, such as sludge volume index (SVI) and settling initial flow (F0), were determined for comparison during the evolution of several bulkings. It was shown that rHa was more sensitive to the appearance of filamentous bulking than SVI and F0, therefore it was concluded that detection of filamentous bulking can be shown from rHa.

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