The production and processing of crops and livestock often generates wastes that are difficult to handle, have detrimental environmental impacts if left untreated, and which have significant nutrient value when properly recycled. Anaerobic digestion of those waste products reduces environmental effects while generating a revenue stream.
From meat and dairy products, to grains and fruits, each wastewater type has a unique fingerprint that corresponds to the products and the methods used to treat it. SENTRY™ provides a real-time estimate of organic matter and can help production staff operate processing equipment to minimize losses and save on waste treatment costs.
Clean Water Applications
At the beginning of the water cycle, the SENTRY™ platform provides value to users. Whether the "beginning" is stormwater falling on hard infrastructure, or impoundments used as source water for drinking water treatment facilities, our signal can help identify anticipated impacts of those waters.
Co-digestion in Anaerobic Digesters
Many communities are faced with decreasing landfill capacity and excess digestion capacity. The nexus of these two issues has led to the idea of digesting organic wastes at a municipal wastewater treatment facility. Dubbed "co-digestion," this approach to waste management can benefit all interested parties.
The ability to digest wastes trucked to a municipal facility relies on active monitoring of the digestion process. SENTRY™ provides a robust technology to monitor the accumulation of volatile (fatty) acids in the digester. This data can be used to create digester feeding regimes that maximize biogas production and volatile solids destruction, while avoiding costly "upsets" to the digestion process.
The SENTRY™ signal can detect very low rates of carbon consumption. We have sensors installed in a drinking water system in California that monitors finished water quality. That system measures carbon consumption rates that are less than 1% of the rate typical of untreated domestic wastewater.
Feed-forward control is becoming a reality. It’s no secret that aeration is the largest energy use in water resource recovery facilities (WRRF). Current best practices rely on backend control. SENTRY provides a feed-forward actionable information that combined with flow is a surrogate for organic load. There are multiple strategies for control that can be implemented with the sentry strategy.
Food and Beverage
An emerging application for SENTRY™ is monitoring the wastewater from food processing industry. Most foods and beverages contain carbon compounds, in the form of sugars, starches, or alcohols. Our sensors can detect these compounds and help a food processor to understand, minimize, and control wastewater. This new knowledge is used to reduce product loss, increase revenue and manage costs.
Whether the industry treats their wastes directly, or pays to have someone else treat the wastes, understanding the practices that impact waste concentration is a valuable piece of information that can increase profitability and market share.
Most industrial process industry uses water for a variety of purposes. Often, water is used as a solvent or ingredient for products. In other processes, water is used to cool equipment or products. And in other processes, water is used to transport products or clean process equipment. Each use of water in an industrial facility has the potential to contaminate the water and render it unusable before it is purified.
The most challenging part of treatment facility operation is a lack of clear knowledge of the characteristics of the wastewater being treated. The SENTRY™ platform provides a real-time insight into the organic matter present and provides the operator with an opportunity to make process changes to reduce electrical consumption and chemical costs.
Other Wastewater Applications
While most initial SENTRY™ installations are in the primary influent or primary effluent streams in a conventional wastewater treatment facility, after learning of the potential value of the SENTRY™ platform, some owners turn to other, internal processes to improve facility operation.