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Optimisation of faecal sludge processing via vermifiltration

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conference contribution
posted on 12.02.2018, 15:11 by Carla Enrique Hernandez, Claire Furlong
Faecal sludge requires treatment before it can be safely discharged. Novel treatment technologies, such as vermifiltration need to be explored. This study aims to determine if a simple vermifilter containing Eisenia fetida can process sludge and explores the effect of bedding materials (woodchip, granular activated carbon (GAC) + woodchip, and clay pebbles + woodchip) on nitrogen reduction in the effluent. All bedding materials performed well for general effluent quality, but nitrification was not found to occur. This was thought to be due to sampling and analysis techniques. The GAC bedding was unsuitable as worm density decreased. The optimum bedding material was woodchip which yielded the highest worm and cocoon densities, vermicompost production and solids conversion. This study proves that E. fetida have the ability to process sludge in a simple vermifilter and adds to the debate on nitrification in these systems.



  • Architecture, Building and Civil Engineering

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  • Water, Engineering and Development Centre (WEDC)

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WEDC Conference


ENRIQUE HERNANDEZ, C. and FURLONG, C., 2017. Optimisation of faecal sludge processing via vermifiltration. IN: Shaw, R.J. (ed). Local action with international cooperation to improve and sustain water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) services: Proceedings of the 40th WEDC International Conference, Loughborough, UK, 24-28 July 2017, Paper 2833, 7pp.


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WEDC 40th International Conference