Wastewater Engineering - News

Updating a wastewater system in New Albin, Iowa

Fehr Graham will improve the lives of the citizens of New Albin, Iowa, by improving their wastewater system. With a population of about 500, New Albin officials were not interested in funding the large capital and increased operational costs associated with the recommended facility. Fehr Graham researched alternatives and found AlgaeWheel technology to be a good fit for the city.
Colleges and Universities

The AlgaeWheel system is a fixed-film treatment process. The “wheels” are partially submerged in the wastewater and are rotated by the buoyant force of diffused air released beneath. Microorganisms and algae grow on the wheels and treat the wastewater. The system is placed in a greenhouse to provide sunlight for the algae and to keep the system from freezing in the winter. As a bonus, there is little odor inside the facility. The AlgaeWheel system provides a reliable system with low energy cost and low operation and maintenance requirements, which is especially important for small communities like New Albin.

Colleges and Universities

Unfortunately, AlgaeWheel was not an approved technology by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. So, Fehr Graham worked with the manufacturer to obtain and provide the data necessary for Department of Natural Resources to grant approval. With this approval, Fehr Graham prepared a facility plan that recommended the AlgaeWheel system, so the city could move forward with funding applications and design.

Construction is estimated at $1.6 million.

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