This Sustainable Greenhouse Cleans Human Waste out of Water

Biomatrix uses plants and greenhouses to clean waste black water into clean water that meets all the necessary standards

Living Machine Notes by Lisa Shaw
Opened in 1995

  • Takes all the sewage from the Park except for 3 or 4 early
    buildings, which were grandfathered into the town system.
  • 132 buildings connected equivalent to 72 cubic meters per day or 400pe
  • 2 main processes anaerobic and aerobic. Anaerobic is outside the greenhouse in 3 septic tanks. Each one is 30 cubic meters. These collect rubbish, plastics, trap fat, perform treatment with no energy, dead bacteria (sludge) are recirculated back to septic tank and digested by the anaerobic bacteria. Pumped every 3-5 years.
  • Inside aerobic treatment. 9 tanks in each train (identical). Split. If necessary everything can go down one train while maintenance is carried out in the other. The main maintenance is the diaphragm aerators are cleaned once every couple of years.
  • 1st tank closed aerobic, the smelly air piped to top of septic tank. The methane gas is very small only enough to light a candle. The anaerobic process is smelly whereas aerobic not smelly.
  • 4 open aerobic tanks. Water flows by gravity, level in septic tanks and tanks are the same = displacement.
  • Process is to reduce BOD (biochemical oxygen demand) this is a measure of pollution. When sewage goes into a river the fish die. This is not because they are poisoned but instead because the bacteria in the sewage eat the oxygen and the fish starve of oxygen. These tanks give the bacteria lots of oxygen and they break down pollutants Roots of plants provide habitat for biofilm communities. This is not an uptake process.
  • Nitrifying Ammonia NH3 with oxygen to Nitrite NO2, which becomes Nitrate NO3.
  • Clarifier no air duck week= lemna or azola. Stops sunlight and therefore algae growing and clogging the pipes. Conical bottom on this tank and the dead bacteria settle out into the bottom and are pumped back to the septic tank.
  • Then 3 tanks called ecological fluidized beds, generic name is fixed film reactors. These have rocks, the water circulates through the rocks exposed to the biofilms living on the rocks = polishing. This is anoxic tank and denitrification occurs from nitrate to nitrogen gas, which is harmless.

Learn more about BioMatrix:……

Filmed by Dylan Magaster


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