How to Improve and Control Wastewater Odors

Written by AOS Treatment Solutions on September 21, 2017
Control Wastewater Odors

In today’s world, controlling wastewater odors is a top concern at water treatment facilities. The improvement and control of foul odors is a primary consideration because communities are less tolerant of the bad smells and they are considered unsanitary. Wastewater professionals needed to come up with new ways to address the odor in design and operation plans at various facilities. The number of odor control technologies has increased as a result. Here is a little more background information on how municipalities can improve and control wastewater odors.

Control Wastewater Odors

Anytime wastewater is collected and treated, it has the potential to release foul odors into the surrounding air. But most odor problems happen as a result of the collection method. They develop due to anaerobic or “septic” conditions in which conditions don’t permit oxygen to exist in the wastewater and the sulfates increase, causing a strong, offensive odor similar to that of rotten eggs. This formula can also be very corrosive.

There are several different methods that can be used to improve and control odors from wastewater collection and treatment. These include vapor-phase technologies and liquid-phase technologies.

Vapor-Phase Technologies

Vapor-phase technologies are used to control odorous compounds in the air or gas. These are usually used in point-source applications like wastewater treatment plants and pump stations. They help to ventilate the sources of odor problems and use a ventilation system to maintain a negative pressure on the area. The result is the prevention of leakage from vents and other escape paths so the foul odors can only escape through the ventilation system after it has been treated. This is a very effective way to treat noxious emissions.

  • Wet Air Scrubbing is a flexible and reliable way to approach odor control and can be used to treat pretty much any water-soluble contaminant.
  • Liquid Redox Technology is not as widely used and is sometimes considered too complicated and costly for odor control applications.
  • Biofiltration can be used to treat many different water-soluble contaminants and is a very effective way to remove sulfur-based odor compounds in wastewater.
  • Solid Scavengers are solids or liquids that remove sulfur compounds from gas or liquid and convert them to stable compounds. They are great for treating biogas with lower levels of hydrogen sulfide.
  • Carbon Absorption passes an airstream over a bed of absorbent carbon, which soaks up the odor-causing compounds. It’s the most simple of the odor control technologies.

Liquid-Phase Technologies

Liquid-phase technologies involve treating a stream to control wastewater odors released from the stream. They usually involve adding a chemical to the wastewater in order to control bad odors from forming or to react with the compounds and limit the smell. The treatment is most often done in wastewater collection systems and keeps hydrogen sulfide from escaping from the liquid into the air.

  • Iron Salts can be added to wastewater in order to provide more oxygen and help to dissolve the sulfide. However, they are hazardous compounds and usually need double-wall tankage and piping systems.
  • Bioxide Process involves adding bioxide to wastewater in order to dissolve sulfide and control odors. It is fairly safe and easy to store and handle.
  • Oxidizing Agents can be added to the wastewater in order to control odors but all oxidizers are classified as hazardous.
  • Anthraquinone can be added to wastewater to disrupt the sulfate reduction process and limit the smell. It is a non-hazardous compound.

These are the most effective and popular ways to treat and control wastewater odors. Get in touch with AOS Treatment Solutions for more information on improving and controlling any wastewater smell in your municipality.

Posted Under: Wastewater Treatment Solutions