Settling Or Flotation

The separation mechanism is the same for settling and flotation. Stokes' law governs both methods of separation. When the settling velocity (Vs) is positive, the particle settles; when it is negative, the solid particle rises.

When a coagulated waste can be treated by either settling or flotation, wastewater treatment facilities can achieve higher separation rates and higher solid concentrations through dissolved air flotation. This process requires smaller basins and results in smaller sludge volumes with greater water recovery. On the other hand, flotation systems require more operator attention and in some cases extra maintenance.

In addition to their use with settling and flotation, wastewater treatment facilities often use flocculation or coagulation to enhance other separation operations, including filtration and centrifugation.

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