Wastewater Treatment with Anaerobic Digestion & Anammox

Australian red meat processing facilities can produce significant volumes of wastewater during slaughtering and cleaning operations.

Australian red meat processing facilities can produce significant volumes of wastewater during slaughtering and cleaning operations. This wastewater stream can be rich in organic contaminants and nutrients, and thus can require varying levels of treatment to comply with water discharge regulations. The traditional treatment technologies can have either a large space demand or high operating cost, particularly if nitrogen and phosphorus removal is required. However, the treatment cost can be significantly reduced using novel approaches to minimize energy and chemical inputs as well as physical footprints, while also maximizing recovery options for energy and nutrients.

AMPC has recently concluded a research project with the University of Queensland involving an investigation into a novel treatment system for red meat processing wastewater that incorporates three key elements (shown in Figure 1): (A) a high-rate sequencing batch reactor (SBR) process for carbon and nutrient removal; (B) an anaerobic digestion process for sludge stabilisation and bioenergy (methane) production; and (C) an anaerobic ammonium oxidation (anammox) process for elimination of residual nitrogen.