Exam Study Guide - December 2020

Licensing exams can be challenging. Our Exam Study Guide helps you prepare by presenting questions similar to those on an actual exam. You can find many more sample questions on the TPO website at www.tpomag.com/study.

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By Rick Lallish

Membrane bioreactors are becoming a viable option for retrofitted waste treatment facilities or newly built facilities. What two types of MBR layouts are commonly used?

A. Inward and outward

B. Sidestream and inline (submerged)

C. Aerobic and anaerobic

D. Microfiltration and ultrafiltration

Answer: B. MBR technology is a combination of activated sludge and fixed-film processes. It uses a membrane filtration unit to perform the solid-liquid separation instead of a secondary clarifier. There are two types of layouts, sidestream and inline. Sidestream uses the process in a separate tank, and the inline units are placed directly in the aeration basin. More information can be found in the Office of Water Programs, Operation of Wastewater Treatment Plants, Volume 1, 8th edition, Chapter 5.


By Drew Hoelscher

Under OSHA, what criteria determine whether a space is classified as a confined space?

A. The space has limited means of entry and exit, is not designed for continuous occupancy, and is of a size and configuration so that it can be entered to perform work.

B. The space has permanent entry and exit points, is designed for continuous occupancy, and is of a size and configuration so that it can be entered to perform work.

C. The space is exposed to extreme temperatures, is designed to hold only one person, and is below grade.

D. The space is exposed to open atmosphere, is designed to hold only one person, and is in a remote location.

Answer: A. Confined spaces are a common hazard in the water industry, so properly identifying these spaces is important to keeping personnel safe. Examples of concerning areas include valve or pump vaults, chemical storage bins, filters, and water storage tanks. Confined-space hazards, if not properly addressed, can result in serious injury or death. More information on identifying permit-required and nonpermit-required confined spaces can be obtained through 29 CFR 1910.146, https://www.osha.gov/lawsregs/regulations/standardnumber/1910/1910.146.

About the authors

Rick Lallish is water pollution control program director and Drew Hoelscher is program director of drinking water operations at the Environmental Resources Training Center of Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. 


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