Proteus real-time Coliform monitoring optimises effluent disinfection & reduces regulatory violations in WWTP

Proteus real-time Coliform monitoring optimises effluent disinfection & reduces regulatory violations in WWTP

Two Proteus Instruments fluorescence based coliform monitoring systems have been successfully commissioned in a UV-treatment final effluent application. The addition of this ground-breaking technology, in operation during the summer months pre and post disinfection, is helping to ensure safe public recreation in the receiving watercourse, regulatory compliance and operational cost savings.

Configured with a highly sensitive tryptophan and chromophoric dissolved organic matter (CDOM) fluorometers, turbidity and temperature sensors, the instruments on board processing algorithms provide a real-time derived Total Coliform output in CFU/100mL down to 1 count per 100mL ±10 CFUs.

Installation for this application required deployment in a stilling tube to ensure fluorometers kept in dark conditions. The instruments modbus output enabled simple integration into existing SCADA system for real-time data feed and process control based upon pre-UV-treated effluent CDOM and Coliform loads.

During commissioning the client followed the Proteus paired sampling protocol for calibration to local site conditions, collecting 12 samples for correlation of Coliform concentrations. A custom calibration function was generated for the instrument resulting in a strong correlation to the lab samples.

Further tests involving the filtration of irradiated samples and measurement with The Proteus in the laboratory confirmed there was a low-level residual free tryptophan signal, indicating effective deactivation of pathogens and providing confidence that the derived Coliform output reflected actual cells.

The commissioning data was reported to the regulator and the frequency of lab sampling was reviewed in favour of a threshold based sampling scheme. This has since reduced operator sampling, laboratory analysis resources and optimised energy intensive UV-disinfection through real-time control and resulted in greater regulator confidence in the WWTPs self-reporting.

Get in touch to learn more about Proteus state-of-the-art, in-situ fluorometer sensor technology and how to effectively track organic matter dynamics in your application. 

Flexibility, connectivity and integration are at the heart of Proteus technology with options for a wide variety of WQ parameter, use with a flow cell, in open water as a spot reader, or permanently mounted. Data can output via log file, PC connection, handheld android Bluetooth display, 3G telemetry, Modbus into SCADA or SDI-12.  

Advantages of real-time monitoring using the Proteus include: 

  • Improving upon existing control parameters like ammonia and DO
  • Potential to utilise permits more fully while maintaining compliance with regulations 
  • New insights into the accuracy of sampling and laboratory analysis
  • Increase efficiency and optimisation of the wastewater treatment process
  • Reduce unnecessary wear and tear on machinery, reducing service costs and increasing service life
  • Changing to a proactive operational culture, no longer waiting for lab results and reacting to problems after they have impacted process efficiency and environmental health