What is an SBR wastewater treatment system?

Posted by Callum Vallance-Poole, on October 26, 2020.

Graf UK One2clean sewage treatment plant

At GRAF, all our wastewater treatment products use SBR technology, which allows the water to be treated in batches at various points. Below we explain more about what an SBR wastewater treatment system is and how it works.

What is an SBR wastewater treatment system?

Sequencing batch reactors (SBR) or sequential batch reactors is a sludge activated system designed for wastewater treatment. They are able to stop solids to reduce organic matter found in wastewater, which is done over a number of cycles, depending on the size of the tank.

How does a SBR tank operate?

There are four steps involved when using an SBR system:

  • Charging cycle – There are two chambers involved in the process, with the wastewater first entering the primary treatment chamber via the inlet. This is where any solid substances will be held before being moved in the secondary chamber. 
  • Aeration cycle – The second batch can now begin, with oxygen introduced into the tank via a diffuser. This is when the biological cleaning process takes place, activating the microorganisms in the waste that will start to clear away the solids.
  • Rest phase – Once the aeration cycle has ended, the live sludge will settle at the bottom of the tank, with the clear effluent rising to the top.
  • Clear water extraction – The purified wastewater is then fed into a discharge system via a sampling chamber and out into a drainage field or water course. Once completed, the sludge is then returned from the SBR tank back into the primary treatment chamber. 

Benefits of SBR wastewater treatment

  • Because SBR technology uses a storage and batching system, the effluent can be stored at peak periods and treated in smaller batches throughout the course of any given day. This means each batch is given full treatment time and peak surges are avoided.
  • An SBR tank is operated by air power generated by blower/compressor, which means there are no moving parts of electrical components inside the tank itself. This reduces maintenance and replacement costs and makes for a more efficient operation. 
  • There is no need for final sedimentation tanks or return activated sludge pumping as everything is conducted within a single tank. This also means SBR systems take up a smaller footprint as fewer tanks are required.

What SBR tanks are available?

GRAF’s one2clean sewage treatment plant is an SBR system which features a single tank and chamber, using only 3 steps to produce clean water. No odours are emitted via the system, and requires little maintenance, lower power consumption and reduces less sewer sludge to help the local environment.

Marketing Coordinator - Based at our UK HQ in Banbury, Oxfordshire, Callum is responsible for promoting Water Management Systems, Attenuation Tanks, Treatment Plants, Rainwater Harvesting Systems and more!