Anaerobic Ponds

Anaerobic ponds (see Figure 7.21.9) treat high-strength wastewater with a high solids concentration. These are deep earthen ponds with depths to 9 m to conserve heat energy and maintain anaerobic conditions. Influent waste settles to the bottom, and partially clarified effluent is discharged to another treatment process for further treatment. Anaerobic conditions are maintained throughout the depth of the pond except for the shallow surface zone. Waste conversion is performed by a combination of precipitation and anaerobic metabolism of organic wastes to carbon dioxide, methane and other gases, acids, and cells. On the average, anaerobic ponds achieve BOD5 conversion efficiencies to 70%, and under optimum conditions, 85% efficiencies are possible (Metcalf and Eddy, Inc. 1991).

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