Efficient Industrial Wastewater Treatment In Winter

As temperatures plunge during the cold wintery months across many parts of the world, wastewater treatment plants can be severely affected, especially if temperatures fall below the minimum operating range for the plants. Depending on the type of wastewater being treated and the process involved, some machinery may experience downtime until the weather conditions improve.  

Unlike traditional wastewater treatment plants, the LAT Unit is capable of operating within a temperature range of between -25°C (-13°F) and 35°C (95°F) – meaning there is minimal disruption to the plant in winter as it’s capable of adapting to wide temperature shifts throughout the year. 

Additionally, as wastewater treatment plants are often located in remote areas, they can experience larger temperature fluctuations and be more prone to damage in adverse weather conditions. One location that experiences such weather patterns is Shenyang, North China – home to our clients at Daxin Landfill. 

China often experiences extreme weather patterns with average temperatures between -10.6°C (13.0°F) and 25°C (77°F) throughout the year, which can make sites much less efficient in winter. However, since installing LAT Units on-site in January 2019, the units have delivered over 95% uptime with 24/7 operation (and fixes required only minimal maintenance and did not cause major disruptions). Alongside this, although the units were designed to recover a minimum of 70% clean water from the landfill leachate, they have consistently achieved results in excess of 85% clean water recovery – going above and beyond the requirements and still saving the client significant amounts of money.

The LAT Units at Daxin Landfill, and indeed other sites, are specially designed to capture and utilise low-grade waste heat that is otherwise discarded in the atmosphere. Using this method of recycling energy, the units can cut operational costs by around 48% on average. For Daxin Landfill, the operational costs have been less than £2 per m3 (on average) for input wastewater – much less than they were spending before.

LAT Unit on site

How do cold temperatures affect wastewater treatment?

Wastewater treatment that involves aerobic digestion will naturally slow down in cold temperatures or may even cease if temperatures drop below zero as the bacterial processes that are required for the chemical reactions to take place have slowed down or the microorganisms themselves have become dormant. Anaerobic processes, however, are more viable in low-temperature conditions and wastewater treatment is still possible though it is more expensive as it requires more energy.

What is the best temperature for wastewater treatment? 

Generally speaking, temperatures of around 20 – 35°C (68 – 95°F) are ideal for most wastewater treatment plants to operate effectively, however, LAT Water has engineered an efficient wastewater treatment unit capable of working at lower, more ambient temperatures. At the extremes, the LAT Unit is capable of handling wastewater in outdoor temperatures as low as -25°C (-13°F) without compromising the treatment process.

What sensors are used in the wastewater treatment plant?

LAT Water’s LAT Units can be monitored remotely 24/7 and have a range of sensors such as temperature sensors, oxygen sensors including chemical oxygen demand (COD) and biological oxygen demand (BOD) sensors, pH level sensors, input/output volume measuring, and lots more. This also helps our LAT Water engineers identify any emerging issues and rectify them before they become a problem – reducing your downtime and keeping your plant operational all year round.

Contact The LAT Water Team

Find out more about our leachate treatment and wastewater management solutions by contacting our team on +44 (0)1635 635900 or emailing info@latwater.com. You can also download our corporate brochure for more details. 

Elias Elia
16th Dec 2022