Water Recycling

The recycling of water entails the process of removal of contaminants using essential physical, biological and chemical processes.

The recycling of water entails the process of removal of contaminants using essential physical, biological and chemical processes. Water recycling aims at reusing the treated water for purposes such as; irrigation, industrial practices, toilet flushing and the replenishment of groundwater basin.Water recycling allows us to save on financial resources that would have otherwise be used to pay for fresh water. Primary treatment refers to the application of physical methods to eliminate contaminants; whereas biological processes facilitate added treatment otherwise referred to as the secondary treatment. Also, we have the tertiary treatment where chemicals such as chlorine are added to the water to purify it even further.

Water Recycling

Physical Treatment

Physical treatment is the first step in the water recycling process, and it entails passing the raw sewage through mechanical bars to eradicate large solid particles such as plastic material, rags, and sticks. The removal of the large solid elements prevents the destruction of the pumps and other rotating mechanisms used in the process of recycling. After passing through the bars, the fluent enters the grit chamber where saturation with fine air bubbles is done to allow fine particles to settle beneath the chamber. Primary clarifiers allow further slowing of the wastewater and as a result of reduced velocity solids sink at the bottom whereas fats, oils, and greases float on top.The physical treatment eliminates nearly half of all contaminators in wastewater.

Secondary Treatment

The secondary treatment marks the commencement of the biological process aimed at removing most of the remaining pollutants. Water spills into aeration bowls where water and oxygen mix. Micro-organisms use up the organic material, reducing the Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD) in the water, converting non-settleable waste to settle-able waste which is captured later on in clarifiers and ending up in the wastewater bio-solids. The majority of water recyclers dub themselves “bug farmers” because they harvest handsome populations of micro-organisms. Considering the process is biological, substances or chemicals unsafe to life interfere with the running of the recycling plant.

Chemical Systems

Once the bugs complete their work, chemicals such as chlorine are added to kill any remaining harmful microorganisms the last clarifiers didn’t manage to eliminate. The chlorination process lasts for about twenty minutes and once complete; chlorine is removed. Chlorine removal entails adding sulfur dioxide to remove chlorine which poses a threat to aquatic life.Lastly, the treated water is discharged to a water body referred to as an outfall.

Benefits of Recycling Water

Recycled water brings with it tremendous economic, social and environmental benefits. Water recycling facilitates the use of treated water to ensure that sensitive ecosystems don’t experience a fresh-water shortage, same case for households, plants, wildlife, and fish. Furthermore, treated water discharged into water bodies such as oceans and lakes means a healthy ecosystem. Water recycling has also brought about the tailoring of water quality to the specific usage of water, that is, it enables saving of high-quality water for uses such as drinking and preserving low-quality water to uses such as flushing toilets.

Recycling Water