How to Remove Struvite

How to remove struvite
6" pipe from CAFO operation that our Struvite Remover cleared

When looking at photographs of struvite filled piping and clogged valves, it always leads to the question, “How do you remove struvite from waste water treatment plants (WWTP) or Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFO) without causing a major interruption?” We interviewed Charles Jennings; he is a consulting engineer for WWTPs and CAFOs, who has spent a great deal of time on the best ways to remove struvite. He gave us a few tips and shared a few of his experiences with struvite.

One of the easiest ways to stay on top of a struvite or vivianite problem is to utilize the plant data that you are collecting 24 hours a day, seven days a week and take full advantage of it. One of the pieces of data that you will have in your logs is the time it takes for a batch of solids to process through the plant and in some cases you have the data that tells you how long it takes to move from the anaerobic digester to your sludge tanks.

Jennings related to us that there was one WWTP that had a fourteen inch (14”) diameter transfer line that moved sludge from the anaerobic digester to the sludge holding pond. They noticed that it was taking 45 minutes to transfer when it should only take 4 minutes to pump the sump. When it got to the point that it was interfering with their process, they ended up replacing the valve – and it was then that they discovered that struvite had completely blocked the valve. This particular plant had periodically maintained the valve by mechanically cleaning by hydro-jetting, but that only cleaned the easy to dislodge struvite. If they had wanted to really clean the valve mechanically, they would have had to use a grinder, and that would have meant not having the valve available for a week or more.

An alternative method for removing struvite that is much easier to administer and control than mechanical grinding and spraying. JS 9325 is a liquid solution, environmentally safe product that has proven itself over time to remove struvite efficiently and cost-effectively. JS 9325 is very effective at safely attacking and dissolving the struvite crystal (rock) by targeting the magnesium component of struvite. Struvite is a compound made up of three elements: magnesium, ammonia and phosphate. In WWTPs when these three elements specific weight ratio (1:1:1) is met, struvite precipitates out of the plant’s liquid. WWTPs attempt to control struvite precipitation by controlling the pH and magnesium level of the liquid, as well as the CO2 release from the anaerobic digester. JS 9325 attacks the magnesium in the existing struvite crystal, causes it to go back into solution and the struvite breaks down. The rate at which it takes to dissolve the struvite is a function of time and concentration.

We are happy to send you a sample of Struvite Remover JS 9325 for you to check its effectiveness on your struvite sample in your laboratory or call us at 866-754-8062.