This paper describes the investigations in a sedimentation and circulation reactor (SU-reactor) of a three-phase Biocos plant. The aim of these investigations was the determination of the temporal and depthdependent distribution of suspended solid contents, as well as describing the sludge sedimentation curves. The calculated results reveal peculiarities of the Biocos method with regard to sedimentation processes. In the hydraulically uninterrupted (pre-)settling phase, a sludge level depth was observed, which remained constant over the reactor surface and increased linearly according to the sludge volume. The settling and the thickening processes of this phase corresponded to a large extent to the well-known settling test in a onelitre measuring cylinder. During the discharge phase, the investigated settling rate was overlaid by the surface loading rate and the sludge level changed depending on the difference between those two parameters. The solid distribution of the A-phase indicated a formation of functional zones, which were influenced by the surface loading. The formation was comparable to the formation of layers in secondary settling tanks with vertical flow. The concentration equalisation between the biological reactor and the SU-reactor proved to be problematic during the circulation phase, because a type of internal sludge circulation occurred in the SU-reactor. A permanent sludge recirculation seems to be highly recommendable.

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