Flow Simulation In A Submerged Membrane Bioreactor At Laboratory Scale

Y.M. Carreño-Martinez, J.M. Gozalvez-Zafrilla, J.A. Mendoza-Roca, and A. Santafé-Moros
Universidad Politecnica de Valencia, Spain
Published in 2010

Submerged membrane bioreactor (SMBR) is an efficient technology for wastewater treatment that combines biological process and membrane filtration in one single stage. In the most usual configuration, submerged membrane hollow fibers are set in several planes. Air is introduced from the bottom in order to supply oxygen to the microorganisms but also to reduce fouling over the membrane fibers. Therefore, oxygen distribution and shear stress over membrane surface are interesting parameters that determine the system performance. We have developed a laboratory scale device to study how the air flow and air injection distribution contribute to minimize fouling and consequently to membrane performance. We have used the bubbly flow and the Convection & diffusion modes to study different effects like bubble size, air flow, position of the air injectors, etc. To assess modeling results we have perform experiments with dye injection to visualize streamlines and dispersion.