Underdrains

The underdrains used in trickling filters support the filter medium, collect the treated effluent and the sloughed biological solids, and circulate the air through the filter. Precast blocks of vitrified clay or fiberglass grating arranged on a reinforced concrete floor can be used as the underdrain system for a rock-media trickling filter. Precast concrete beams supported by columns or posts can be used as the underdrain and support system for a plastic-media trickling filter (McGhee 1991). The floor should be sloped towards either central or peripheral collection channels at a 1 to 5% grade for improved liquid flow. The minimum flow velocity in the collection channel should be 0.6 m/sec (2 ft/sec) at the average daily flowrate (Metcalf and Eddy, Inc. 1991). The liquid flow in underdrains and collection channels should not be more than half full for adequate air flows.

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