Technology Set to Create Largest Ultrasonic Sludge Digestion Plant in World

Following successful trials, New Zealand's water and wastewater utility, Watercare Services, is to install seventy-eight sonix™ ultrasound horns at its flagship Mangere Water Reclamation Plant, serving a population of 800,000 near Auckland.

This will create the world’s largest ultrasonic plant for treating sewage sludge.

sonix™, which has won industry awards for innovation, uses intense ultrasound waves to cause cell lysis prior to anaerobic digestion, optimising digester performance.

And with environmental regeneration and sustainability a key driver behind Watercare Services’ investment at Mangere, sonix™ was selected not only for its operational benefits but its ‘green’ credentials too.

By improving the digestion process using sonix™, Watercare Services will be able to realize greater quantities of biogas, making better use of co-generation facilities on site. Treatment with sonix™ also minimises chemical usage for activities such as sludge dewatering, lime stabilisation and foam control.

Dr. Piers Clark, managing director of Sonico, the joint-venture which has brought sonix™ to the market, believes this installation marks an exciting new chapter in the technology’s development.

"Using ultrasound to treat sludge is a very novel concept. We have shown that sonix™ works, but never before at this scale. The Mangere plant gives us a wonderful opportunity to demonstrate just what an effective solution ultrasound is for large wastewater utilities worldwide."

"It is gratifying to see sonix™ adopted by a forward-thinking organisation like Watercare Services that will really extract the full benefits from our technology: immediate improvements to sludge digestion and payback through energy savings and reduced biosolids — everything sonix™ was designed for," he said.

Sonico Limited

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