Phosphorous Removal

Phosphorus removal in wastewater is an important aspect of operating municipal and industrial waste treatment plants. Regulatory agencies often require removal of 90% of the incoming phosphorus to a treatment plant and may also require a P concentration of no more than 1 mg/L (ppm) in plant effluent, particularly when treated wastewater is discharged to a small stream, lake or wetlands.

Damage Caused by Excess Phosphorous

High levels of phosphorus and other nutrients, such as nitrogen, can create harmful water quality conditions. The result from excessive phosphorous levels may include:

  • Algae blooms
  • Excessive weed growth
  • Oxygen depletion in streams, lakes, rivers and other bodies of water

Sources of Phosphorous Pollution

Nutrient loading began to garner attention in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Phosphorous pollution comes from:

  • Fertilizing farm lands
  • Household detergents
  • Residential septic tanks
  • Municipal wastewater treatment plant runoff
  • Residential lawn fertilizers.
  • Storm water runoff
  • Outdated sewage and septic systems
  • Trash
  • Wildlife

Phosphorous Pollution Prevention

Over the years, the two most effective control methods to reduce phosphorus have been implemented:

  1. Legislation to ban phosphate  in laundry detergents
  2. Upgrading of municipal wastewater treatment plants

USALCO Phosphorous Control Solution

USALCO sodium aluminate (LSA 38) is highly effective for phosphorous control in wastewater treatment plants where discharge limits are set by federal, state, or local regulations.

LSA 38 outperforms alum, ferric chloride and ferrous chloride at lower overall cost. 

Sodium aluminate, LSA 38, contains the highest concentration of metal ions to sequester and control the problem. Unlike these acidic chemicals, Sodium Aluminate will not deplete available alkalinity and depress effluent pH below discharge limits.

LSA 38 has been proven to solve problems, add value, and provide cost savings when converting from alum, ferric chloride or ferrous chloride.

USALCO’s Sodium Aluminate provides these benefits:

  • 50 – 80% reduction of gallons per day chemical requirement
  • Reduced or eliminated use of chemicals for pH adjustment, such as sodium hydroxide and lime
  • Elimination of negative interference in UV systems where iron was previously utilized, thereby improving energy efficiency
  • Improvement of ammonia removal and compliance in systems with deficient or depleted alkalinity.
  • Consistent control year round, unlike competitive chemicals whose performance diminishes outside certain pH and or alkalinity ranges

Download the USALCO Guide to this Application

LSA 38 Phosphorus Removal Application Guide

Compare Phosphorous Removal Chemicals

Comparison of Phosphorus Removal Chemicals

Case Studies

➔ Case Study #1 – Solving alum performance problem
➔ Case Study #2 – Restoring compliance and reducing cost
 Case Study #3 – Replacing ferrous chloride eliminates metals contamination and associated cost