AlexRenew launches nation's first full-scale sidestream deammonification system
Alexandria Renew Enterprises has announced the launch of an innovative annomox process to help clean wastewater operations. The organization is the first in the nation to design a full-scale sidestream deammonification system.
ALEXANDRIA, VA, May 8, 2015 -- Today, Alexandria Renew Enterprises (AlexRenew), which serves about 320,000 people in the city of Alexandria, Va., announced the launch of an innovative process to help clean wastewater operations. The technology uses Anammox® microbes, also known as red bugs. AlexRenew is the first in the nation to design a full-scale sidestream deammonification system, which is only one of a few in operation nationally.
Anammox exists in the natural environment and is safe for use in the wastewater treatment process; the application is used in Europe and Asia with excellent results. Likewise, AlexRenew conducted a pilot program in 2008 with DC Water, CH2M Hill, New York Department of Environmental Protection, and others.
The use of anammox bacteria has the potential to create up to 25-percent savings on energy and chemicals when compared to conventional wastewater cleaning processes. The process will also reduce the number of trucks delivering chemicals to the water resource recovery center located near historic Old Town Alexandria.
The sidestream anammox operation is part of AlexRenew's Nitrogen Upgrade Program and is a key component of its Centrate Pretreatment (CPT) Facility. Using large centrifuges, ammonia-rich wastewater is extracted from solids and placed in the CPT, where the anammox and other microbes convert ammonia in dirty water into nitrogen gas that is safely released back into the atmosphere.
The next steps in the use of anammox will be to learn more and optimize the process and then begin testing for mainstream operations, which could lead to even greater cost savings. "The knowledge we gain from the implementation and maintenance of this process has the potential to be the industry standard," said AlexRenew CEO Karen Pallansch. "Eventually, we want to test the process in our mainstream operations, which could lead to even greater savings."