Lab and Research Subteams

Partical Removal

C-NARC

The C-NARC subteam is investigating how the rate of attachment of coagulant nanoparticles to clay particles and the flocculator walls changes over time. Research conducted by Contact Chamber as well as observations by other teams suggests that the rate of increase of head loss over the length of the flocculator is proportional to the concentration of free coagulant nanoparticles in each section of the flocculator. By measuring head loss through the flocculator, the team hopes to observe a decrease in the rate of head loss accumulation.

Members:

  • Yeonjin Yun | djs469@cornell.edu
  • Ada Lian | al894@cornell.edu
  • Valentine Starnes | vs344@cornell.edu

High Rate Sedimentation Bottom Geometry

Sedimentation is a critical process for water treatment plants. It is the process by which coagulated minerals, dirt, clay, and other particles are removed from the water via gravitational settling. In a sedimentation tank, water flows upward as flocs settle downward. The particles settle into a "floc blanket" - a fluidized bed of suspended solids colliding in a bottom zone of the sedimentation tank. The particles are initially light and small, but as coagulant dosage persists and particles continue to collide, the particles clump together into heavier floc that will settle into the basin of the recirculator. This process permits clearer water to continue up the plate settler, resulting in a lower effluent NTU (Nephelometric Turbidity Unit, a measure of clarity). Past High Rate Sedimentation (HRS) teams have hypothesized that floc blankets thin as experiments progress due to coagulant sticking to the walls of the flocculator, reducing the overall coagulant dosage.

For this semester, the team will be focusing on the redesigning of the input of water into the high rate sedimentation tanks. This will include the 3D drawing and printing of the inserts.

Members:

  • Luis Benitez | leb252@cornell.edu
  • Madeleine Lee | ml895@cornell.edu
  • Elizabeth Jung | ejj45@cornell.edu

High Rate Sedimentation Plate Settlers

Sedimentation is a critical process for water treatment plants. It is the process by which coagulated minerals, dirt, clay, and other particles are removed from the water via gravitational settling. In a sedimentation tank, water flows upward as flocs settle downward. The particles settle into a "floc blanket" - a fluidized bed of suspended solids colliding in a bottom zone of the sedimentation tank. The particles are initially light and small, but as coagulant dosage persists and particles continue to collide, the particles clump together into heavier floc that will settle into the basin of the recirculator. This process permits clearer water to continue up the plate settler, resulting in a lower effluent NTU (Nephelometric Turbidity Unit, a measure of clarity). Past High Rate Sedimentation (HRS) teams have hypothesized that floc blankets thin as experiments progress due to coagulant sticking to the walls of the flocculator, reducing the overall coagulant dosage.

For this semester, the team aspires to build on the research of the Summer 2018 team and determine whether a flow recycle system will increase floc blanket uniformity. They will also explore the effects of varied angles of entry and pipe thickness on the flow recycle system

Members:

  • Luke Meyer | lcm227@cornell.edu
  • Leena Sen| lps57@cornell.edu
  • Carmen Ortega Salan | co276@cornell.edu

Dissolved Species Removal

Fluoride Auto

Fluoride contamination of groundwater is a major, well-known health concern, that still does not have any highly effective or sustainable technologies to remedy it. The World Health Organization suggests the Nalgonda method, but this technique has several major flaws including a treatment efficiency that is limited to only 70 percent, and a large dose of aluminum sulfate, which causes sludge disposal problems. Instead, we use Polyaluminum Chloride (PACl) as a coagulant to which the fluoride can both adsorb to and coprecipitate with. The goals of the Fluoride Team is to design and create the optimal system for adsorbing and coprecipitating out fluoride from groundwater.

Members:

  • Desiree Sausele | djs469@cornell.edu
  • Emily Spiek | eas397@cornell.edu
  • Dominic Grasso | dng35@cornell.edu
  • Melissa Louie | ml897@cornell.edu

Fluoride Gravity

Fluoride contamination of groundwater is a major, well-known health concern, that still does not have any highly effective or sustainable technologies to remedy it. The goals of the Fluoride Team is to develop the optimal system for adsorbing and co precipitating out fluoride from groundwater for implementation in upcoming AguaClara plants located in India.The team is now working to finalize a design and to begin construction of the new, electricity-free apparatus. Once the system is functional, the team plans on running experiments to test its fluoride removal capabilities.

Members:

  • Sarah Huang | sk2523@cornell.eduslh268@cornell.edu
  • Cindy Jin | cj359@cornell.edu

Humic Acid

Investigate the effluent HA concentrations as coagulant dosages increase for certain HA influent concentration using spectrophotometer. Design experiments to compare HA effluent concentration trends for different HA influent concentations.

Members:

  • Walter Guardado | wg249@cornell.edu
  • Matthew Lee | mbl222@cornell.edu
  • Carolyn Wang | jw2376@cornell.edu

Dissolved Gas

We aim to design a system that removes excess dissolved gas from influent water prior to entry into an AguaClara water treatment plant.

Members:

  • Thomas Bradford | tsb49@cornell.edu
  • Emily Wood | ew465@cornell.edu
  • Saul Bernaber | sb883@cornell.edu

Waste Water Treatment

Upflow Anaerobic Sludge Blanket (UASB) Research

What is a UASB: a form of anaerobic digester that is used for wastewater treatment.

Wastewater enters the reactor from the bottom, and flows upward. A settled sludge blanket filters and treats the wastewater as the wastewater flows through it.

This semester, the team will be working on running tests with a lab-scale UASB reactor to determine optimal geometry of components. Additionally, UASB Research will be running dye-tests with synthetic sludge to study flow patterns of water moving through the reactor, and identify fail conditions.

Members:

  • Cara Smith | cjs354@cornell.edu
  • Sayeeda Aishee | sta48@cornell.edu
  • Rafael Heryapriadi | rh563@cornell.edu

Upflow Anaerobic Sludge Blanket (UASB) Design

The Design team will be fabricating a full-sized prototype UASB reactor that will be commissioned for testing at the Ithaca Area Wastewater Treatment Facility. They will also be creating CAD drawings of the UASB reactor using Onshape to make the designs available to all on an open-source platform.

Members:

  • Kanha Matai | km694@cornell.edu
  • Shaina Fang | sf449@cornell.edu
  • Emily Liu | ezl5@cornell.edu
  • Nina Blahut | nab238@cornell.edu

String Digester

The team's goal this semester is to determine if ideas about using strings as media for trickling filter based design are a feasible component of a future AguaClara wastewater plant.

Members:

  • Tony Martinez | apm234@cornell.edu
  • Gaby Sibel | gvs27@cornell.edu
  • Kiki Lo | jkl223@cornell.edu
  • Zsofia Szegletes| zms28@cornell.edu