The Kaldnes biomedia K1, which is used in the patented Kaldnes Moving Bed(tm) biofilm process, has been tested along with other types of biofilm carriers for biological pretreatment of a complex chemical industry wastewater. The main objective of the test was to find a biofilm carrier that could replace the existing suspended carrier media and at the same time increase the capacity of the existing roughing filter-activated sludge plant by 20% or more. At volumetric organic loads of 7.1 kg COD/m3/d the Kaldnes Moving Bed™ process achieved much higher removal rates and much lower effluent concentrations than roughing filters using other carriers. The Kaldnes roughing stage achieved more than 85% removal of organic carbon and more than 90% removal of BOD5 at the tested organic load, which was equivalent to a specific biofilm surface area load of 24 g COD/m2/d. Even for the combined roughing filter-activated sludge process, the Kaldnes carriers outperformed the other carriers, with 98% removal of organic carbon and 99.6% removal of BOD5. The Kaldnes train final effluent concentrations were only 22 mg FOC/L and 7 mg BOD5/L. Based on the successful pilot testing, the full-scale plant was upgraded with Kaldnes Moving Bed™ roughing filters. During normal operation the upgraded plant has easily met the discharge limits of 100 mg COD/L and 50 mg SS/L. For the month of September 2002, with organic loads between 100 and 115% of the design load for the second half of the month, average effluent concentrations were as low as 9 mg FOC/L, 51 mg COD/L and 12 mg SS/L.

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