On-site Aerobic Treatment Systems (ATS)
On-site aerobic treatment systems are an alternative to traditional septic tanks or septic treatment systems. They go by various terms such as “on-site sewage facility” (OSSF), “aerobic septic system”, “aerobic treatment unit” (ATU) or just “aerobic treatment system” (ATS). They typically range from 500 gallons per day to 1,500 gallons per day of treatment capacity.
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Applications for aerobic treatment systems are the same as septic systems. Residential, small commercial, campgrounds and RV parks are all applications where an on-site aerobic treatment system is appropriate. Industrial applications having higher strength or greasy wastewater can also use Aerobic treatment systems however some sort of upstream pre-treatment equipment would be required for optimal treatment efficiency.
Aerobic vs. Septic Equipment
An on-site aerobic treatment system utilizes a treatment tank just like a septic system. The major difference is that an aerobic system uses bacteria that requires air to be added to the wastewater. This air requires the addition of an air compressor or “blower”.
Aerobic Treatment Process vs. Septic Treatment Process
Aerobic bacteria live in the presence of air. The bacteria used in septic tanks are “anaerobic” which means they live in the absence of air. The bacteria in an aerobic system offer a faster treatment process with less solids residual than that of a septic system. Aerobic bacteria also offer a more complete treatment of wastewater than do their septic counterparts.
Advantages of Aerobic Treatment Systems:
- Faster treatment of wastewater
- More complete treatment of wastewater
- More flexibility for effluent discharge due to better treatment
- Better conforms to the increasingly stringent requirements of state and federal environmental treatment standards
Disadvantages of Aerobic Treatment Systems:
- More upkeep due to requirement of air compressor and associated equipment
- Costlier to operate due to electrical requirements of the air compressor
- The treatment process may need to be monitored more closely to achieve optimal performance
- Possible noise issue associated with air compressor (usually easy to mitigate)
Aerobic treatment Systems are the Future
In many areas, septic tanks are no longer being permitted. This means the owners are being required to replace or augment their septic tanks with aerobic treatment processes. Many RV parks and Campgrounds are finding themselves in a bind as they are caught between fines for violations and the expense of retrofitting their septic treatment systems.
At Clear Water Supply, we have options for owners of septic tanks to retrofit or replace their systems with aerobic processes. Call us today to discuss what solutions we can provide for you!
If your curious to learn more, see our Aerobic and On-Site Treatment System Terms page for definitions to some commonly used terms.