The thick of it

Nick Hankins, Nidal Hilal, Tan Phong Nguyen

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle


Synthetic sludge process is a biological treatment process of municipal and industrial wasterwaters to reduce public health and environmental hazards. The components of synthetic sludge include polysterene latex particles of bacterial size, alginate, fibrous cellulose, and calcium ions, which are effective for the treatment of wastewater. The photometric dispersion analysis for synthetic sludge has shown that no significant flocculation occurs without adding calcium ions and begins when Ca ion concentration reaches 15 mM. The final flocculation size increases with increase in calcium concentration and there is a shift in size distribution, which shows that calcium cations in synthetic sludge are directly involved in flocculation through cationic bridging. Dewatering is improved with the addition of synthetic sludge conditioning agents and the thickened sludge samples with 1 g/l TSS are conditioned with varying amounts of the cationic polymers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Number of pages4
Specialist publicationChemical Engineer
StatePublished - Jun 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • General Chemical Engineering


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