Treating Biodiesel Refinery Wastewater

IMG_1560Aqua Operations’ industrial wastewater clientele includes one of the largest biodiesel refineries in the west. Water demand for the production of biodiesel equates to approximately 10% of the finished product, therefore, for every 100,000 gallons of biodiesel produced, approximately 10,000 gallons of wastewater is produced. The chemical oxygen demand on the wastestream can fluctuate between 60,000 mg/l  to over 300,000 mg/l.

Once the flow has been equalized and the pH IMG_1671adjusted, Ashland Water Chemicals, coagulants and flocculants provided by Aqua Operations Chemicals, are used with dissolved air flotation to mechanically remove as many pounds of solids from the wastestream as possible. The coagulant is introduced and mixed in stream followed by the flocculant before entering the DAF unit, resulting in a reduction of solids as much as 90%.

IMG_1581The wastestream is continuously analyzed to ensure proper chemical dosage. After preliminary treatment, secondary biological treatment is introduced within 3 BCRs. The bacteria used for treatment must be acclimated in the bio-chip reactors. Acclimation typically takes up to 45 days to establish a sustainable biomass. The process is very slow, with the influent rate set as low as 1 gpm for the initial phase.

Aqua Operations, Inc. provides solutions for the wastewater industry. Call us today at 888-746-6535 to discuss your municipal, or industrial treatment needs, or send me an email to