On demand use of direct precipitation of wastewater has been successfully implemented at several large Scandinavian wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) as a cost-efficient method of treating wastewater bypassing secondary treatment. During wet weather situations or when the capacity of secondary treatment is reduced excess wastewater can be treated through efficient direct precipitation. This increases the total capacity of the WWTP to remove phosphorus during these periods. This treatment strategy allows the WWTPs to meet stringent effluent phosphorus limits without extending secondary treatment of the main plant, despite high wet weather flows. The gain in terms of reduced phosphorus emissions varies depending on local conditions such as climate, collection system and secondary treatment capacity. It also varies from year to year depending on the weather and reductions of capacity due to planned refurbishing or unplanned breakdown of equipment. Operating chemical precipitation on demand has proved to contain challenges to operation and organisation of the WWTP. These challenges include logistics of start-up, training of staff and maintaining the system between occasions of operation. Sufficient up-stream storage capacity, reliable weather forecasts and good contracts with suppliers of chemicals are keys of success.

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