عنوان مقاله [English]
Minimizing sludge production in the treatment facility is a reasonable measure to reduce waste in sewage treatment, especially as regards excess biological sludge. In this regard, submerged aerated filters' (SAFs) have recently found increasing applications in treatment facilities. Thanks to their treatment mechanism, they have greatly contributed to reduction of waste production and, thereby, to reduced treatment costs. Biomass growths of both attached and suspended types take place in these filters. However, little attention has been paid to suspended sludge production and to its relationship with the physical properties of the filter. The design and application criterion for these filters is the organic loadings on unit of area or unit of volume of the media used in these filters. In this study, four filters with different physical properties and different specific areas were loaded with synthetic wastewater made of low-fat dry milk powder for five different hydraulic retention times to evaluate excess sludge production rates in submerged aerated filters. It was shown that increasing specific area increased SCOD removal efficiency up to a maximum level in saturated growths after which point the removal efficiency remained unchanging or decreased. The results also revealed that decreased hydraulic retention times increased sludge production rates in all the study columns and that media with higher porosity levels produced less excess sludge despite lower pollutant removal efficiency.