Credit: Wastewater Compliance Systems

New technology could lead to simpler wastewater treatment in developing countries, making it both cheaper and more effective.

The plastic domes are filled with bacteria that makes them as effective in treating wastewater as sewage ponds and expensive purification plants, cleaning wastewater from both organic waste and from chemicals. This is the conclusion after having been tested in several U.S. cities.

These “Bio Domes” have been developed by engineers at the company Wastewater Compliance Systems in Salt Lake City.

Plenty of Room for Germs

Inside each dome, there is a set of a further four domes, and each of these is filled with a crumpled plastic material with a total area that is approximately 260 square meters (2,798 square feet). And thus provide far more living space for the purifying bacteria compared to more traditional sewage ponds, where the bacteria only have the surface water to live on.

The domes also implement another method to speed up the cleaning process, which is to let the bacteria live in total darkness. Because of this, algae is inhibited to grow and thereby enables the bacteria to eat away alone.

Because of this darkness, the Bio Domes can be placed on the bottom. Then air is pumped through the domes, to provide oxygen for the bacteria and circulate the wastewater.

Bio-domes placed on the bottom of an artificial lake. Credit: Wastewater Compliance Systems.

Cheap and Effective

The Bio Domes has been tested in several U.S cities and the resulting data indicates that organic waste and suspended solids were reduced consistently by 85 percent; ammonia levels dropped by 98 percent in warm water and 93 percent with a temperature below 50 degrees. Also, nitrogen levels fell by 68 percent in warmer water and 55 percent in cooler water.

Due to their eco-friendliness, affordable nature and effectiveness – they are indeed a good choice for developing and developed countries alike.