Detalhes do Documento

Modelling of a wastewater treatment plant using GPS-X

Autor(es): Pereira, Sofia Filipe

Data: 2014

Identificador Persistente:

Origem: Repositório Institucional da UNL

Assunto(s): Pulp and paper effluents; Activated sludge process; Modelling; Calibration; Urea


The work present in this thesis was conducted in Portucel Soporcel mill, in the industrial complex of Setúbal, and had as main objective the modelling of the treatment process of the effluents from this industry, using for this purpose the software GPS-X. This program has a clear-cut graphical interface and uses a specialized translator that converts the graphical process into material balance equations, based on dynamic models. These models allow, besides the kinetic descripton of the treatment process carried out at the WWTP, to simulate new scenarios towards the study of critical parameters for the process as well as optimization and control of the WWTP. The effluent that arrives to Portucel’s WWTP, from the pulp and paper mills of the complex, is particularly rich on fibers (solids), lignin, chlorinated and sulphur compounds, resin acids, phenols and starch. It has a brown colour due to the presence of lignin and has a high oxygen chemical demand (about 1,095 g O2/m3). The WWTP uses the activated sludge process with extended aeration. This method allows an efficient removal of organics at the same time as it minimizes the sludge production. For the modelling of the process it was necessary to collect historical data related to the WWTP’s performance over the last 3 years. This data was used as input values for the influent characterisation and as output values to achieve the treated effluent characterisation. Since the first simulation did not lead to the desired output results, it was necessary to proceed to the model calibration, by means of a more detailed study concerning the nutrient and organic fractions of the influent. Once the model was calibrated, a study of the urea flowrate was conducted. The urea is added to the influent, before the beginning of the biological oxidation, as a way to satisfy the nitrogen requirements along the treatment process. However, this flowrate was never submitted to a study that evaluated, in a higher detail, the effective requirements of this nutrient. Thus, some simulations were done using the software, by decreasing successively the value of the urea flowrate and the results obtained were analyzed. Furthermore, these simulations were validated in the WWTP itself, at Portucel, through the decrease of the urea flowrate to half the normal value. Both the simulations and Portucel’s results showed that, actually, the addition of urea is not necessary because it does not affect the treatment process in a significant way, namely in terms of the removal of chemical oxygen demand. The simulations have also showed that the concentration of nitrogen in the final effluent diminishes significantly with the reduction of the urea flowrate, which could be advantageous in an environmental point of view.

Dissertation to obtain the degree of Master in Chemical and Biochemical Engineering

Tipo de Documento Dissertação de mestrado
Idioma Inglês
Orientador(es) Figueira, Henrique; Oehmen, Adrian; Reis, Maria d'Ascensão
Contribuidor(es) Pereira, Sofia Filipe
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