Oct 14, 2011

Schweighofer Group Chooses Aquantis to Supply Large-Scale Anaerobic Plant

Austrian wastewater treatment plant will generate biogas to fuel energy-efficient power station

The Schweighofer Group, an Austrian family owned enterprise with forest-based industry as its core business, has selected Aquantis, a subsidiary of Veolia Water Solutions & Technologies, to design and build a wastewater treatment and energy generation plant for its Schweighofer Fiber GmbH site in Hallein, Austria.

The new plant will treat approximately 5,700 m³ per day of wastewater with an organic load of 62 tons COD per day. The treatment process will also generate biogas with a combustion capacity of approximately 4 MWh.

The wastewater produced by the process on the Hallein site is currently being treated in the plant’s existing anaerobic/aerobic treatment facility and subsequently discharged into the Salzach River.

Due to changes in the production process, a bleaching concentrate will be generated, causing a considerable growth in organic contents. In order to facilitate the energy recovery and relieve the existing anaerobic treatment phase, an expansion of the current plant was essential.

In this new plant, Aquantis will install BIOBED EGSB reactors. This key anaerobic technology allows operators to manage key issues, such as pollution reduction, energy recovery, reliability and odor treatment, with a minimal environmental impact.

To secure high operational safety, the reactors have been designed with a moderate volume load. The reactors have no internal constructions within the reaction volume so that the amount of anaerobic mass can be maximized, resulting in a minimized sludge load.

The biogas produced will be fed to the existing biomass power station; this will be a significant contribution to reduce both the operating costs and the carbon footprint.

The new Hallein water treatment facility is part of a comprehensive two-year investment program for the strategic realignment of the site. The next focus will be on the production of high-quality cellulose and bio-energy.