Computer aided design of trickling filters

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

2 Scopus citations


Computer programs based on mechanistic mass transfer models have been developed by the author to predict sBOD removal, ammonia removal, and oxygen transfer in plastic media trickling filters. Although the use of these models requires the numerical solution of a set of differential equations, the availability and speed of modern personal computers makes these programs accessible to design engineers. Application of the program that predicts sBOD removal (TRIFIL2), using a default molecular weight distribution, predicted lower removal (68%) than observed (95%) for a trickling filter in Tucson AZ. Size distributions of sBOD were therefore measured using two ultrafiltration membranes with molecular weight cutoffs of 1,000 and 10,000 daltons. Using the observed sBOD size distributions as input into the computer model we calculated 93% removal which compared very well to the observed removals. We conclude that high sBOD removals at the Tucson plant are due to the high concentration of low molecular weight organic compounds in the wastewater.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationCritical Issues in Water and Wastewater Treatment
EditorsJoseph N. Ryan, Marc Edwards
PublisherPubl by ASCE
Number of pages8
ISBN (Print)0784400318
StatePublished - 1994
EventProceedings of the 1994 National Conference on Environmental Engineering - Boulder, CO, USA
Duration: Jul 11 1994Jul 13 1994

Publication series

NameNational Conference on Environmental Engineering
ISSN (Print)0731-1516


OtherProceedings of the 1994 National Conference on Environmental Engineering
CityBoulder, CO, USA

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Engineering


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