Slow-Rotating Dewatering Drum Creates Consistent Drying Results

A slow-rotating drum in a horizontal biosolids dewatering system promises consistent, high-quality results.
Slow-Rotating Dewatering Drum Creates Consistent Drying Results
James Penner, left, owner of In The Round Dewatering, explains the mechanism behind his horizontal biosolids dewatering system to attendees at the 2015 WWETT Show. The system rotates once every two hours, dewatering 18,000 to 25,000 gallons at a time.

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James Penner asks professionals to think outside the box about dewatering. His invention, the horizontal biosolids dewatering system from In The Round Dewatering, was on display at the 2015 Water & Wastewater Equipment, Treatment & Transport (WWETT) Show in February. He believes it is the next evolution in roll-off dewatering boxes.

“This unit will speed up the dewatering process and give you a more uniform, consistent result,” says Penner. “We think it is a great fit across several industries, including septage and municipal dewatering. We are even testing it right now on frac and tailings waste from mining areas.”

The unit’s stainless steel drum with perforated plastic tile lining is mounted on a roll-off frame. Water trays contain discharge water. An 18,000- to 25,000-
gallon batch is mixed with polymer before being filtered in the rotating drum, driven by a 1/2 hp variable-speed electric motor with a heavy-duty chain and sprocket. The turning eliminates crusting and wet pockets to produce uniform, consistent results. The dewatered material dumps easily, and the drum is self-cleaning.

“As the water drains, the unit rotates one complete turn every two hours,” says Penner. “Typically you let the unit run overnight and by morning you have dry material ready for disposal or transport. Then you fill it back up and do it all over again. It’s very energy efficient, so you just fill it up and let it go.”

The unit is 90 inches wide by 20 feet long. It has a stainless steel drum, powder-coated frame and plastic filter tiles. Tie-down straps are included. The unit can typically be filled in 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 hours. Dewatered biosolids typically contain 18 to 24 percent solids, septage 28 to 40 percent, and grease trap waste in between those levels.

Penner is still beta testing the unit on frac wastewater and tailings but is encouraged by the results so far. Dryness is greatly affected by the exact conditions and polymer used. Each load of solids typically weighs 4 to 7 tons.

Penner says the unit’s efficiency is getting the attention of companies and municipalities: “We are talking with a lot of private contractors, but with the regulations for land application always changing, a lot of cities are looking at ways to create more uniform biosolids. A lot of municipal operators at WWETT were interested in demonstrations. This is great for them because it eliminates drying beds, saving time and space.”

Penner looks forward to attending the WWETT Show every year for the diverse audience: “It not only fits the septic guy, but also the municipal operators and gas and oil crowd. I get more follow-up contacts from this show than any place else I go. These people are very knowledgeable of the industry, and they know what works and what doesn’t. That’s why I’m always excited to get here.” 317/539-7304;


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