Canton water reclamation facility to install new membrane bioreactor

January 28, 2014 by  

The water reclamation facility of Canton, Ohio, will spend approximately $85m to install a new membrane bioreactor some time in 2014.

The bioreactor will be the world’s largest installation of this type, and will also be the highest costing capital improvement project in Stark County’s history. A bioreactor is any type of container used to hold organisms in order to take advantage of the biochemical processes they display naturally. A good example of this process is a beer fermentation tank, which holds microorganisms that cause the tank’s contents to ferment. In the waste water facility, the microorganisms will help break down waste before it passes through the membrane.

Canton discharges water from the facility into the Nimishillen Creek, from where it eventually makes its way to the Gulf of Mexico. The bioreactor will make this discharge even cleaner than it is at present. According to the Superintendent of the facility, Tracy Mills, too many nutrients in the water cause algae to grow, taking oxygen from existing aquatic life and allowing species to flourish that do well on pollutants. This leads to a decline in game fish and “cleaner” species.

The new bioreactor will also eliminate the need to operate the facility’s sludge incinerator, which will stop it releasing between 150 and 200 tons of carbon monoxide per year. The improvements are expected to make the Canton reclamation facility a showplace in the sewage treatment industry, with actual construction slated to start in April this year.

The facility’s management might want to work with brochure printers to create a booklet giving detailed information on the process to visitors to the plant.