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Laboratory-scale waste stabilisation pond development

Abstract

The present study describes the development of a laboratory-scale waste stabilisation pond (WSP) system, undertaken in order to investigate the effects of hydraulic, physicochemical, microbial and physical parameters on wastewater treatment. Previous studies have focused predominantly on hydraulic characteristics. This system was engineered at a scale much smaller than had previously been seen in the literature. The scale of the model used here allows for improved optimisation at a shorter time scale that would be seen for larger pilot-scale systems. Additionally, with the addition of viruses, a smaller scale model allows for more control over viral concentration used. Once constructed, the system was dosed with wastewater from a wastewater treatment plant and both the influent and effluent were monitored using common testing methods as well as direct viral analysis. Successful wastewater treatment was seen in terms of reduction of indicator bacteria and virus, as determined by culture-based methods. This treatment and the associated stabilisation of physicochemical parameters such as dissolved oxygen and pH, indicates the successful development of a microbial community within the laboratory-scale WSP.

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