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Classes > ChE/ENVE 523




Biological Treatment Processes


Instructor.  Lars Angenent, Ph. D.

Environmental Engineering Science Program and Department of Chemical Engineering

phone: 314-935-5663 ; e-mail:

Location of class: Cupples I, room 111

Office Hours: Please make an appointment via e-mail, be discouraged to walk in at anytime, because I plan my days around specific tasks.

Pre-requisite.  Waste Water Treatment (CE [E90] 352A) and Environmental Engineering Biology (CE [E90] 584); or equivalent, or permission by instructor.

Course Description.  This course will go into great detail on the fundamental concepts of biological processes that are relevant for wastewater treatment engineering applications.  The course will first tackle the stoichiometry and kinetics of biochemical reactions and then use the obtained knowledge to evaluate and model wastewater treatment systems.  After taking this course you should be able to evaluate existing wastewater treatment plants and future designs using your basic process understanding, modeling tools, and knowledge gathered from current literature.

Typically, during the semester the fundamentals of biological processes will be lectured on the Tuesday class period.  On the Thursday class period we will work on the design project and we will discuss individual processes of wastewater treatment facilities.

Required Text.  C. P. L. Grady Jr. ,G. T. Daigger, and H. C. Lim, Biological Wastewater Treatment. 2nd Ed., Revised and Expanded, Marcel Dekker, Inc., New York, 1999.

In addition to the textbook, several handouts and papers will be used as reading assignments or study material.  They will be provided during the semester or will be available in Kim ColemanÕs office in Cupples II, 208.  In addition the following additional text books will be located in Kim ColemanÕs office.

á      Metcalf/Eddy: Wastewater Engineering: Treatment and Reuse, 4th edition, McGraw Hill, Boston, MA.

¥   Montgomery, Consulting Engineers, Inc. 1985. Water Treatment Principles and Design, John Wiley & Sons, Inc. , New York, NY.

á      B. E. Rittman and P. L. Mcarty, Environmental Biotechnology, principles and applications, McGraw Hill, Boston, MA.

á      C. N. Sawyer, P. L. McCarty, and G. F. Parkin, Chemistry for environmental engineering and science. 5th Ed., McGraw Hill, Boston, MA.

á      W. Stumm, Aquatic chemical kinetics, reaction rates of processes in natural waters, John Wiley & Sons, Inc. , New York, NY.

Homework Projects.  Two homework projects will be tackled in a to be assigned group of 2 or 3 students.  Homework projects will generally be due 2 weeks after it is assigned.  The homework is due before class on the due date.  If the homework cannot be turned in before class on the due date, permission from the instructor to change the due date is necessary.  Without this permission, the homework will not be graded.

Some homework assignments will include material that has not been covered in class yet at the time of the assignment, but requires reading of papers or books available in Kim ColemanÕs office.

Writing assignments are required to be typed with 1.5 line spacing, 1" margins, and font 12 points Times or Times New Roman.  Writing assignments are primarily evaluated for content, but writing effectiveness is also important (e.g., organization, style, grammar, punctuation, spelling, and neatness). 

Examples of references that can be consulted for writing effectiveness are:

¥    W. Strunk Jr. and E. B. White. 1979. The Elements of Style. 3rd Ed. MacMillan Publishing Co., Inc., New York.

¥    J. G. Smith and P. A. Vesilind.  1996. Report Writing for Environmental Engineers and Scientists. Lakeshore Press, Woodsville, NH.

Design Project. I have enrolled our course in a student design competition organized by Metcalf & Eddy.  We will plan and design a nutrient recovery system for anaerobic digester centrate from a wastewater treatment plant in NYC.  As part of the project a poster will also be prepared.  Details can be found in the handouts page of the course web site under design project.  You will also visit a local wastewater treatment plant in March to discuss the design with plant operators.  As a group you will be required to submit a short report and present a summary of their visit in a 15-20 min informal oral presentation.  You are encouraged to use slides or transparencies with diagrams of the treatment plants, pictures of different unit processes (take your camera on your trip!), wastewater and effluent characteristics, etc.

Exams:  All exams will be 'closed-book' exams.  You can make your own formula sheets for the exams.  For Exam 1, you can use one double-sided sheet (2 pages); for Exam 2, which is also the final exam, you can use two double-sided sheets (4 pages).

Permission for a make-up exam needs to be obtained before the exam.

Grading:      Homework                                                   10%

                      Design Project + Field trip:                               45%

                      Exam 1                                                        20%

                      Final Exam:                                                  20%

                      Class Participation and Professional Evaluation     5%