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New anaerobic digestion process to benefit wastewater treatment plants

The U.S.-based Water Environment Research Foundation (WERF) has donated to the public a patent for processing bioso...


The U.S.-based Water Environment Research Foundation (WERF) has donated to the public a patent for processing biosolids from water and wastewater plants, so that the waste can be disposed of safely.

The patent was given to the Foundation for a process it developed in a project called “Pathogen Destruction Efficiency in High Temperature Digestion.” As the name suggests, the process is a high-temperature anaerobic digestion process, and it can provide a low-cost method for achieving Class A pathogen standards in biosolids at both large and small wastewater treatment plants. Many jurisdictions in the U.S. require that all land-applied biosolids meet Class A pathogen standards.

The patent was donated by the Foundation with its research partner, the East Bay Municipal Utility District of Oakland, California.

“As the lead investigator in this joint research effort” said David Williams, director of wastewater at the East Bay Utility Board during the dedication ceremony in January, “It is our desire to see that research, which produces technological innovations, be widely available and distributed so that the greatest public good can be achieved. We are hopeful and very pleased that through the release of this patent on our thermophilic digestion process, we are helping to better protect public health and environment.”

See www.werfo.org, “Project Database Search.”