Expert ForumsProcess Development

Topic: Re: Effluent treatment

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I'm not totally sure, but I believe that both mixtures are biodegradable and adsorbable.  Depending upon the levels involved, I looked at the literature sources, and it is "readily biodegradable" 81%-100% after 20-26 days in a BOD bottle test. The source for this is:

The compound can be treated aerobically and slightly less successfully anaerobically. It can also be adsorbed on to carbon at the range of about 0.11 grams/gram in water. (Verschueren, Environmental Data on Organic Chemicals - 3rd ed.)
Depending upon the application and availabilty, you might be able to find that an anionic compound added to the water would strongly bind your cationic detergent and enable you to remove it. Many clays and natural (cheap) minerals, including bentonite clay and some natural minerals fit into this category of compounds. You should be able to remove or destroy most of the compounds quite readily.
However, I do want to mention the need for excellent spill control within the facility. The more you tighten your process streams and stop leaks and spills, the less problem you will have in your effluent.
Commercial defoamers are often sprayed into the surface of activated sludge systems when they have foaming problems due to the presence of various softeners and detergent compounds.