Increasing Aeration Efficiency – High-Speed Single-Stage Blowers

Last Modified: Nov 09, 2011


  • Anthony Farina, P.E. – Hazen and Sawyer

Aeration for biological treatment typically represents the single largest power requirement at a wastewater treatment plant (up to 65-75% or more). Because of this, aeration efficiency is targeted by most municipalities for new design and plant modifications.

In recent years, innovations in blower design – including high-speed operation with air foil and magnetic bearings – have been introduced to the municipal wastewater treatment market. These newer high-speed single-stage direct drive blowers can provide substantial energy savings compared to multistage centrifugal and positive displacement blowers in many applications, and have similar efficiencies to single-stage integrally-geared blowers.

Although the number of high-speed direct drive blower installations in the U.S. is limited, it has rapidly increased over the past few years due to the potential to significantly increase overall aeration efficiency. This presentation will provide an overview of several blower technologies available for process aeration, focusing on high-speed single-stage blowers. Advantages and disadvantages will be presented along with some considerations for evaluating different types of blowers relative to overall project and lifecycle costs.

Read another article related to aeration efficiency.

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