Digestion Treatment Optimisation

Project Title: Control of sludge quality through optimisation of sludge treatment technologies.

Student: Joanne McGuinness

Supervisor: Dr. Eamonn Killilea

Funding Body: Higher Education Authority



A research study is proposed, to examine the effect of variable starting sludge qualities and sludge treatment conditions on the quality of the sludge produced.

The efficiency of aerobic (thermophilic) and anaerobic (mesophilic and thermophilic) pilot plants, treating the selected sludges, will be assessed under different operating conditions. There will be two sets of pilot plants, benchtop at IT, Sligo, and large-scale pilot plants at NUI, Galway. A range of starting and treated sludge quality parameters will be selected. The interaction of these parameters with treatment system operation will be assessed during extended operation of the plants. Options for the control of sludge quality by optimising the treatment process will be assessed.

Conclusions drawn will be examined on full-scale plants in Tralee (anaerobic) and Killarney (thermophilic aerobic).