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1 1 .1 Introduction
11.2 Sedimentation
11.3 Theory of Sedimentation
11.4 Types of Sedimentation Tanks
11.4.1 Detention Time
11.4.2 An Ideal Settling Basin
11.4.3 Surface Loading and Overftow Velocity
11.5 Sedimentation of Flocculating Particles
11.5.1 Efficiency of Tanks
11.5.2 Sedimentation in Practice
11.6 Common Design Criteria
11.7 Details of Horizontal Flow Basins
11.7.1 Rectangular Basins
11.7.2 Radial Flow Circular Tanks
11.7.3 Multi-storey Tanks
1 1.8 Upward-Flow Basins
11.8.1 Hopper-Bottomed Sludge Blanket Basins
I l 8.2 The Pulsator
1 1.9 Basin Failure
11.10 Decrease in Efficiency of Sedimentation Tanks
1 1.11 Summary
11.12 Key Words
11.13 Answers to SAQs

I -I

I ,
Sedimentation is a natural process by which solids with higher density than the
fluid in which they are suspended settles under the action of gravity.
The setting velocity of a particle in a fluid is a function of its density, size and
shape as well as the density and viscosity of the fluid. For sedimentation to be a
practical treatment process, settling velocities of several metres per hour are
Discrete suspensions are made up of particles with a fixed rigid shape, sand, for
example, which do not coalesce when brought into contact. Such a suspension thus,
has a constant settling velocity under specified conditions. Flocculent suspensions
are composed of particles with spongy adherent characteristics, which tend to
agglomerate on contact and produce fewer but larger particles with increasing
settling velocity with time. Simple settling velocity considers the situation in which
a discrete particle is placed in a fluid of lower density. The particle will accelerate
under gravity until a terminal velocity is reached, when the gravitational force is
balanced by an equal and opposite friction drag force. This basic theory is applied
for sedimentation.

After studying this unit, you should be able to
"-fine sedimentation,
s 6cscribe the process of sedimentation,

o distir~guishamongst different types of sedimentation,

s c:.;lculate settling velocity of discrete particle:.
I, describe detention time and its importance,
e state criteria for an ideai settling basin,

rg describe overflow rate, surface loading and overflow velocity,

e discuss design criteria and types of sedimentation tanks,
give details and performance of different types of sedimentation tanks or
basins, and
e define efficiency of sedimentation tanks and discuss various factors
;:Ffccting the efficiency

'The prcxess of sedimentation takes place in a tank or basin circular or rectangular

known as sedimentation tank, settling tank or settling basin. The process has been
used to rernove :
i) Grit in grit chamber

ii) Particulate matter in-primary settling and secondary settling basins.

iii) Destabilised floc in .clariflocculators

iv) Biological floc in activated sludge, and

v) Solids concentration in the secondary settling tanks.

Sedimentation is classified into two categories :

a) I'lain sedimentation, and

b) Sediinentation with coagulatioli

in plain sedimentation impurities. are separated from the suspended fluid hy
gra.vitationa1 force and natural aggregation whereas in sedimentation with
::ougulation, the addition of chemical substances known as coagulants increase the
aggregatiorl and finely divided suspended and colloidal matter are made to settle.
I>zperiding on the concentration of suspended matter and the characteristics of
jlarticles si:din;entation process can be classified in following four categories.
'... .
i,:rst type is one in which particles have little or no tendency to flocculate in a
;,~jr:tesuspension. Such particle are known as discrete particles. They settle as
., .
: - :.i: \!?du:!! r:nt:ities and there is no significant interaction with neighbouring
, ,, .,>.$
,*$- , r.-'.-:t:process is as in case of inorganic sand particles. In the second type,

.:,.:i.: i. .:.r.i.li~:g of flocculent particles in a dilute suspension. Particles agglomerate

>, ,-. . , !;:..> -.l.ei.,,ng
.+ .><'.<
which causes increase in size, shape and density resulting in
. ,., , t i... - ... -
:,:r:~:ar iaster rate. The third type of sedimentation occurs when flocculent
.::; .~;ri:;i.lns settle in an intermediate concentration. Due to the proximity of
... .. ,,;.;;> s:~:11:?rher, they tend to rernain in fixed positions with respect to
. . %

.. :~;.i, .,, .. ..... .;--,cf

Illr E(7!Tjc:as a OLarge mass rather than as individuals, The fourth type is

.. :i. (,..,:I:
.,;,+I.- ..... of i'locc~iientparticles in a very high concentration. Due to high
: . . ~ ~ ! i t : x ~ ~; P ! F - S into physical coritact and form a structure and further
; .; :~r~~- ~ I Ccanie
..,-, :,:j5- ,!! ...,.<, ,-j,>
~ ;A.,e i o cornpression of tht: 'structure. The process is al-so known as
, ' . $ - ! ; , i ; - , : . . . .,;r;;,;
Theory and Design of

If a particles falls freely in a still fluid, accelerates downwards due to gravity until
the frictional resistance or drag of the fluids equals the driving force. After
attaining equilibrium, the particle begins to settle at a uniform velocity, which is
known as settling or terminal velocity of the particle. The settling of the particle in
the suspension is influenced by the size, shape and specific gravity of the particle,
specific gravity and viscosity of the water and physical environment of the particle

I i.e. velocity of water and inIet as well as outlet arrangement of the structure. The
settling of a particle. due to gravity is shown in Figure 11,l.

Figure 11.1 : Free Body Diagram of a Discrete Particle


The f o r c ~ sare due to gravity f w , the buyoant force due to the fluid fb, and the
frictional drag force fd. The downward acceleration of the particle can be obtained
from Newton's second law :

1 v is the settling velocity of the particle and rn its mass. After equilibrium dvldt
becomes zero

1 The force acting on the particle due to gravity is given by the relation :

c where, p = density of the particle

V = volume of the particle, and

I .:
g = acceleration due to gravity
The buoyant force

, where, p, = densi'ty of- water

The drag force fd of the water is a function of the dynamic viscosity q, the density
of water, the settling velocity and the characteristic diameter d of the particle. The
drag force is given by

where, Nd = Newton's drag coefficient

A = Projected area 'Lf the particle at right angles to its motion
Putting values f,, fb and fd in Equation 11.2, we get

Vg (p - p,) = 1/2 N, o 4v2 ...( 11.6)

Water Treatment Rearranging the terms to obtain a relations hi^ for the settling velocitv-

where, G, = Specific gravity of the particle. If the particle is spherical of diameter

d, the ratio V/A

= ( d / 6 ) x ( 4 / d ) = (2/3)d
:. Equation 11.8 becomes

Newton's drag co-efficient Nd is a function of the Reynold's number Re-(which is

given by vd/q) and the shape of the particles. For Re < 1.0, laminer flow condition 1
prevails and the relations between Nd and R, can be approximated by

Putting value of Nd is equation (1 1.9) 1

v = J(4/3). (g/24) (G, - 1) R&

v=m8(vd/q) (G, - 1) d
The equation 11.11 is the Stoke's law and v = cmlsec, d in cm and q in cmz/sec.
At high Reynold's number (1000 to 10,000) Nd is approximately constant for
turbulent flow (about 0.4) and putting Nd = 0.4 in Equation (1 1.9), we get

v = d(4/3) (gl0.4) (G, - 1) d

The equation 11.14 is known as Newton's law. The equatim applies if the particle
diameter is greater than 1.0 mm. For Reynold's number between 1 and 1000, a
transitional flow exists. The relationship between Nd and Re is approximated by the
relation given by Camp and Hazan as i

and Nd =- as given by Fair, Geyer and Okun
1.6 -0.4 -0.6 0.714
V = [ 2 . 3 2 ( ~ - ~ , ) d PW rl 1 ...(11.16)
where, q = dynamic viscosity of liquid
Transition flow formulae are used for particles of size ranging from 0.1 to 1.0 mm.
able 11.1 : Diameters of Different Particles

( Particles 1 Diameter (mm) 1 Particles I Diameter (mm) I 1

Coarse Gravel >2 Silt

Fine Gravel 1- 2 Fine Silt , 0.005 - 0.01 I

-I-- 7 ~ h e and
o ~Design of
Particles Diameter (mm) Particles Diameter (mm) Sedimentation


Coarse Sand 0.5 - 1.0 0.001 - 0.01

Medium Sand 0.25 - 0.5 C1l_ Fine clay 0.0001 - 0,001

Fine Sand 0.1 - 0.25 Colloidal Clay < 0.0001

Very Fine Sand 0.05 - 0.1 Bacteria 0.001

Example 11.1
Calculate the settling velocity of water of a spherical discrete particle of
0.05 mm diameter and specific gravity 2.5. The kinematic viscosity is
1.02 x 10-6 m 2/sec at 19O C. You should also check if the equation used for
calculating settling velocity is valid for the case.

From Equation (1 1.11)

v = 0.002 mlsec.
Equation (1 1.1 1) in valid for laminer flow condition i.e. when Reynold's Number
is less than 1. Hence, we should check whether Reynold's Number is less than 1
for the given condition.

Reynold's Number R = -vd2

'1 i

i.e. the flow is laminer and Equation (1 1.11) is applicable.


As pointed out sedimentation tanks have a variety of forms and common types are
shown in Figure 11.2 to 11.5.
Early treatment plants sometimes used batch or fill and drawn operation for
sedimentation but now a days mostly continuous flow systems are employed.. A
sedimentation tank (or a clarifier as sometimes called) are rectangular, circular or
square in plan and the flow through tank is horizontal, vertical or radial.
Therefore, based on flow pattern, sedimentation tanks are classified as horizontal
flow rectangular tank, radial flow circular tank or vertical flow circular tank.
Circular sedimentation tanks operate as horizontal flow units with a baffled inlet
at the centre and discharge over peripheral weirs, which provide ample length to
ensure low discharge velocities. Figure 11 2(a) and (b) depicts these tanks.
Rectangular horizontal flow type provide the most effective use of land area
hnno..cn fiC n n n f i n r ~ m + ; n nr z r h i ~ hn n c e c h x ~ r l r l n a l in~ r n h l ~ m c~t i n l ~ a
t nA n ~ ~ t l ~ t
Water Trentment

Figure 11.2(a) :Horizontal Flow Sedimentation Tank


---- - -- -- -

~ \ ; r i ; y JSLUDGE
' :.
".. PIPE
Figure ll.t(b) : Radial Flow Circular Tank

sections in relation to establishing quiescent conditions in the settling zone. Sludge

deposited on bottom of the tank, has to be scrapped to a hopper using a
reciprocating blade mechanism, which is prone to operational difficulties. Main
problem with rectangular tanks is the relatively short available length for the
effluent discharge weir. A simple weir across the' exit and of the tank cause
relatively high local velocities with the potential for scour of settled deposits. A
better solution is to utilise inset weir to provide greater discharge length and hence
lower velocities as shown in Figure 11.3.



Figure 11.3 : Inset Weirs for Reduced Overflow Velocities
A relating scrapper mechanism operating continuously directs sludge to a central ~ h m and
y Dalplcr
hopper as has' been shown in Figure 11.2(b) which cleans radial flow circular tank.
Vertical flow hopper-bottom tanks are used in some small waste-weter settlement
units since they have advantage of not requiring mechanical desIudging mechanisms.
In water treatment, the nature and concentration of suspended solids is such that
chemical coagulation is often employed to improve settling characteristics. In
general, however, suspensions in water treatment are of lower density and more
flocculent in nature than those found in raw waste-waters. Sedimentation in water
treatment is generally undertaken in sludge-blanket units. The sludge blanket once
estabIished provides a form of filtering action, which removes particles with lower
settling velocities than the upward velocity in the blanket region of the tank.
Vertical flow sludge blanket units are popular although in recent designs the
hopper bottom, has been replaced by a flat floor with the inflow distributed by a
pipe system. The vertical flow tanks are designed to operate at a specified velocity.
If the solids do not attain this velocity or the hydraulic loading on the tank is
increased, its performance deteriorates.


Figure 11.4 : Vertical Flow Circular Tank




Figure 11.5 : Flocculation and Sedimentation

To avoid turbulent flow in the basis or tank, an inlet zone is provided before the
settling zone. An effective type of an inlet for a rectangular settling tank is in the
form of a channel extending to full width of the tank with a submerged weir
(baffle wall) as shown in Figure 11.6(b). A similar type of outlet arrangement is
provided at the outlet. If also consists of an outlet channel extending for fuIl width
of the tank and receiving the water after it has passed over a weir as shown in
Figure 11.6(b).

In sedimentation tanks clarification of water is effected by providing conditions

under which the suspended materials present in water, settle down. Hence,
sedimentation tanks may be defined as special basins constructed in order to purify
the surface water of rivers, streams or reservoirs by the process of sedimentation.
Water Treatment






Figure 11.6 : (a) The Ideal Settling Tank, @) Section of a Submerged Type Inlet,
(c) Section of a Submerged Type Outlet

he three forces which control the settling tendencies of particles are :

i) velocity of flow, I

ii) the shape and size of particles, and

iii) viscosity of water which depends on temperature of water
In settling of sedimentation tanks, the first two forces i.e. velocity of flow and the
shape and size of the particles are controlled. The velocity of flow is reduced by
increasing the length of travel and by detaining the particles for a longer time in
the sedimentation tanks. The size and shape of particles are altered by addition of
some chemicals in water known as coagulants and the process is known as
"sedimentation with coagulation". Storage reservoirs also serve as sedimentation
basins but proper sedimentation is not affected because of density currents and
turbulence caused by winds. The principle involved in sedimentation tanks is the
reduction of velocity of flow such that particles settle during the detention period. -
Sedimentation tanks are classified as
i) Fill and draw type also known as batch process.
ii) Continuous flow type.
Continuous types are most popular. Depending on their shape, they are classified as:
a) Circular
b) Rectangular
c) Square.
Depending on the direction of flow, sedimentation tanks are classified as : Theorg and Design of
1) Horizontal flow4ongitudinal or radial flow
2) Vertical flowXircular (upward flow)

11.6.1 Detention Time

This is the theoretical time that the water is detained in a settling basin. It is
evaluated as the volume of the tank divided by the rate of flow and is denoted as
D,= V/Q. Thus, it is that time which would be required by the flow of watex: to
fill the tank if there were no outflows.
.: Detention time t for a rectangular tank
- Volume of the tank - -V
rate of flow -Q

And detention time for a circular tank

where, D = Diameter of the tank

H = Vertical depth at wall or side water depth
B and L = Width and length of the rectangular tank respectively.
The formula for circular tank is based on the fact that the volume of the shape of
circular tank used for sedimentation, which is having a cone shaped bottom with
slope 1: 1 and its volume is D2(0.11D + 0.78H).
The detention time usually ranges between 4 to 8 hours for plain sedimentation and
2 to 4 hours when coagulants are used.
11.4.2 An Ideal Settling Basin
i) A rectangular tank is assumed to be ideal for sedimentation tank.
ii) In the settling zone, sedimentation to take place as a quiescent fluid in a
iii) Flow is steady in the settling zone.
iv) The concentration of suspended particles of each size is uniform
throughout the cross-sectional right angle to the flow.
v) Incoming flow is uniformly distributed over the cross-sectional area o f
the tank.,

vi) Particles reaching sludge zone are effectively removed.

zone r
Water Treatment
11.4.3 S u r f a c e Loading/Overflow Velocity
In Figure 11.7, line diagram of a rectangular tank has been shown. The water
containing uniformly distributed sediment enters the rectangular tank with a
uniform velocity V. Let Q is the discharge entering the basin.

:. Flow velocity v

where, B = Width of the basin

and H = Depth of water in the tank
Each discrete particle is moving with a horizontal velocity vH and a downward
velocity v,. The resultant path is given by the vector sum of its flow velocity vH
and settling velocity v,.

Assuming that all particles whose paths of travel are above the line AC will pass
through the basin, from geometric considerations, it can be said that :

Putting value of VH in Equation (11.20) from Equation (11.19), we get :

v =

This shows that all particles having a settling velocity equal a greater than Q/BL
will settle down and be removed and hence, no particle having a settling velocity
more than or equal to Q/BL will remain suspended in the tank. Some particles
having settling velocities lower than Q/BL will also settle down, if they enter at
some other height H1 of the tank. Some particles having settling velocities lower
than Q/B.I, will also settle down, if they enter at some other height H, of the tank.
In that case when particles enter at some other height H1 o f the tank, all particles
having their settling velocities 2 (Hl/H).(Q/BL) will settle down.
If N, is the number of particles of a given size that have settled out and N being
the total number of particles of that size, then percentage of that particular sized
particles, which will be removed is N, / N and is equal to Hl/H for an uniform
distribution of particles.
If 75% of particles of a particular size are proposed to be removed in the settling
tank, then the settling velocity of that sized particles must be kept 2(75/100)(Q/BL)
i.e. Q/BL of that tank shbuld be kept less than or equal to 100/75 x Settling
velocity of that sized particle.
Hence, it is inferred that quantity Q/BL i.e. the discharge pei unit plan area is a
very important term for the design of continuous flow type settling tanks and is
known as overflow rate or surface loading or critical settling velocity or o v e d o w
Normal values of surface loading or overflow velocity ranges between 500 - 750
litres/hr/m2 of plan area for H plain sedimentation tanks and between 1000 - 1250
litres/hr/m2 of plan area for coagulants aided tanks.
The smaller particles will also settle down if the overflow rate is reduced. For a
given value of Q overflow, the rate can be reduced by increasing the plan area o f T h e u p and Ptr:'gn of
Sed: iets4tl: 7,
the basin. "Theoretically depth does not has any effect on the efficiency of
.; !
sediment removal".
Table 11.2 : Settling Velocities of Discrete Particles

Specific Gravity Diameter (in mm) Temp ("C) Settling Velocity


Example 11.2
Calculate the surface area required in an ideal settling tank to ensure removal
of all discrete particles with a settling velocity of 0.0028 mlsec from a flow
of 550 m3/h.

From Equation 11.21

v,,= Q/BL = Q/A

Water ~ r e h t m e n t

Example 11.3
Determine the theoretical removal in the tank in the previous example for
discrete particles with settling velocity of 0.0015 mlsec.

Removal of particles with settling velocity less than the critical velocity is
given by vJv.
:.' % removal =-
= 53.57%

a) Two primary settling basins are 26 m in diameter with a 2.1 m side
water depth. Single effluent weirs are located on the peripheries of the
For a water flow of 26,000 m3/d. Calculate :
i) surface area and volume.
ii) overflow rate in ~ n " / m ~ . d
iii) detention time in hours
iv) weir loading in m3/m.d

b) Define "surface-loading" and detention period in sedimentation basin.

c) Prove that area and overflow rates rather than the detention period
govern the design of settling tank.


Settling properties of dilute suspensions of flocculating particles differ than that of
non-flocculating particles. Flocculent particles are organic flocs formed by chemical
coagulants or biological growths. They- agglomerate gradually. These solids in fact,
are composed of a wide variety of particles of different sizes and surface
In still water heavier particles having larger settling velocities settle at faster rates
overtake f i t i e particles and unite (coalesce) with smaller lighter particles to form
still larger particles resulting in an increased rate of settlement. Wind currents, inlet
and outlet distuibances and tempel.rjture cff'ects produce turbulence within the
settling zone. Due to this,' particles contact increases, which in turn enhances their
size. Again particle contact iilci.eases with dep'cll of the tank. In such case, removal
of suspended particles depends on surface loading as well as depth of settling. The
settling of flocculating solids in the upper levels of primary clarifiers and
clariflocculators is a tjpical example of this type of settlement. To determine, the
settling characteristics of a dilute suspcnsion of flocculant particles a settling
column 1s used, which is a column of an acrylic tube of 150 mm diameter with a Theory and Design of
height equal to depth of the proposed tank. Sampling ports are provided at 60 cm.
~nterval(Figure 1 1.8).

Figure 11.8 : Settling Column with Sampling Po*

The sample containing the suspended matter is placed in the column to ensure
uniform distribution of particle sizes. Samples are withdrawn from the ports at
various selected time intervals from different depths, and concentration of particles
is determined for all the samples withdrawn. The percentage removal is computed
on each sample and is plotted as a number against time and depth. Between plotted
points curves of equal percentage (iso-concentration lines) removal, are drawn as
shown in Figure 11.9.

Figure 11.9 : Settling Curves of Flocculating Particles

Lines represent equal fractions of removal. The overall efficiency of settling is

calculated from Figure 11.9.

Let a tank has an overflow rate of uH. Where vH =H/Tl, where Tl is detention
time. All particles having a settling velocity equal to or greater than vH will be
removed from the tank and particles with smaller velocities will be removed in
proportion v/vH. From Figure 11.4, it is seen that particles between ED and Ec have
settled with an average settling velocity of HA/Tl and between EE and ED with a -
settling velocity of HB/Tl and the overall removal is given by the expression.

E = Ec + (HA/T1vH)(ED - Ec) + (HB/Tl vH) (EE - ED) + ...(11.22)

Following is the result from a settling column test on a suspension of discrete

nn.-t;nlor "rho r"mnl;nrr A o m t l , ,.,n.- 1 A m
Water Treatment '

in sample

Determine the theoretical removal of suspended solids from this suspension in

a vertical flow tank with a surface overflow rate of 205 m/d.
Convert the sampling times and depth of collection in velocities(vo) which the
solids in each sample have not exceeded :
:. 1.4 m/5 min . = 4.56 x 10" m/s
1.4m/10 min - 2.33 x lo9 m/s
1.4 m/20 min = 1.17, x lo9 m/s
1.4 m/40 min = 0.58 x 10" m/s
1.4 m/60 min = 0.38 x lo9 m/s
1.4 m/80 min = 0.29 x m/s
-Settling Velocity
( 1 o9 m/s)
% suspended solids
with v v, 57 49 38 19 6 7

The data have been plotted in Figure 11.10, which shows the pel .rage of
suspended solids with a settling velocity less than or equal to a s.)ecified
settling velocity. The surface overflow rate of 205 m/d -

From Figure 11.10, 49% of the SS have a settling velocity of greater than
2.37 x lo-' m/s and will thus be removed.

:[' }
3 2-37 X I0

Lo/ (, / REMOVAL I N



Rigure 11.10 : Settling Characteristic Curve

11.5.1 Efficiency of Tanks

V = Volume of tank and Q = rate of flow. Theory and Deslgn of
I Sedimentation
In actual working tanks, these ideal flow conditions do not exist. The deviation of
actual flow of the tank from the flow pattern of an ideal tank is called
short-circuiting. Top layers of water in the tank actually reach the outlet in a time
far less than VIQ whereas the bottom layers remain in the tank for a time far in
excess of VIQ. Hence, degree of short-circuiting is related to the magnitude of
deviation of the actual flow pattern to the ideal flow pattern. Hence, the magnitude
of short-circuiting :
Flow Through Period
Theoretical Detention Time
Efficiency of displacement = Magnitude of short-circuiting x 100.
, Short-circuiting produces clarification efficiencies less than expected. Generally, it
should be greater than 30%. Currents induced by the inertia of incoming fluid,
turbulent flow, wind stresses, density and temperature gradients reduce the
efficiency of settling basins. Many factors that adversely affect the tank
performance may be evaluated by the study of short-circuiting in the tank or basin.
Short circuiting in tanks is characterised by the tracer technique. Introduction of a
salt, a dye into the inlet of a tank and measuring the concentration at the outlet for
different time interval, gives the concentration distribution. It also gives the
characteristics of the flow pattern in the tank. Short-circuiting effect in
sedimentation tanks may be minimised by covering the tank, which reduces the
wind and thermal currents.
11.5.2 Sedimentation in Practice
The basic sedimentation theory described in previous sections is for low
concentrations of discrete particles. As indicated in Figure 11.11, the settling
characteristics of flocculent suspensions are non-uniform. In addition, with
suspended solids concentrations in excess of around 2000 mgll, the phenomena of
hindered settlement can cohplicate the prediction of settling basin performance.








Figure 11.11 : Settling Behaviour

An indication of the potential for settlement in a suspension can be obtained by

determining the settleable solids content in a sample. This involves the use of a
graduated 'In-hoff cone for determination of suspended solids. More detailed
information about the settling characteristics of a suspension is obtained by using a
settling column as discussed earlier. The suspended solid content of samples
Water Treatment withdrawn from the column at known depths and time intervals is used to produce
a settling characteristics curve, which is analogous to that derived in a sieve
analysis determination for soil samples.
The hydraulic characteristics of continuous flow systems are never ideal and flow
distribution is a major factor in the design of efficient sedimentation tanks. The
problem is complicated by the fact that many tanks have to operate over quite a
large range of variations and under a range of climatic conditions with varying
temperatures and wind action. Hence, sedimentation tanks do not always perform
well as predicted by theory. It is also important to appreciate that solids separated
from the flow by a settling tank must be removed from the sludge zone as rapidly
and effectively as possible. Failure to ensure effective sludge removed seriously
hinders, the overall performance of a settling basin and possibly that of associated
treatment units. In design, it is, therefore, necessary to consider the speed with
which settled sludge can be scraped from the floor into a collecting hopper. Some
concentration of sludge occurs in the hopper and it is important to ensure that this
more concentrated sludge is withdrawn at a rate which atleast balances the rate at
which it accumulates. If it does not occur, sludge level builds up in the tank,
leading to anaerobic breakdown in the case of waste water sludge causing
deterioration in efficiency. Hence, hydraulic design of sludge removal systems is
also important since concentrated sludge has a much higher viscosity than water.
.If the velocity of sludge removal is excessive, it is likely that piping will occur in
which liquid is drawn through the sludge mass without removing much sludge. If
this happens for any duration of time, blocking of the sludge withdrawal system is


While designing a sedimentation tank, following guidelines should be observed for
its satisfactory performance.,

1) Velocity of flow : Not greater than 30 cm/min for horizontal flow tanks.

2) Tank Dimensions - L : B should be 3 to 5 : 1

If W B is more, chance of short-circuiting is less. Generally length
provided is 30 m and in extreme case, it may be taken as 100 ni.
Breadth 6 m to 10 m. Circular tank : Diameter not greater than 60 m.
Cominon size is 20 m to 40 m. More diameter may invite special
structural arrangements.

3) Depth 2.5 to 5.0 m (3 m more common)

4) Detention period : For plain sedimentation 3 to 4 hours and for

coagulated sedimentation 2 to 2.112 hours.

5) Surface loading or overflow rate or surface overflow rate (SOR)

For plain sedimentation for normal water 12,000 to 18,000 l/d/m2 tank
area and for thoroughly flocculated water 24,000 to 30,000 1/d/m2 of
tank area. For horizontal flow circular tank 30,000 to 40,000 l/d/m2 of

6) Slopes : 1% towards inlet and circular 8%. The total amount of flow ,
from the tank within 24 hours, generally equals the maximum daily
demand of water. For the efficient removal of sediment in the tank, it
should be kept in mind that flow is uniformly distributed throughout the
' cross-section of the tank. If currents permit a substantial portion of the

water to pass directly through the tank without being detained for the
intended time, the flow is said to be short-circuited. To reduce the
tendency of short circuiting proper design of inlets and outlets near the
entrance and exit is necessary. It is to be kept in mind that long Theory and Design of
relatively narrow tanks are less affected by the inlet and outlet
disturbances and by the currents caused by breezes.

Example 11.5
The average daily demand at a town has been estimated as 8 million litres per
day. Design a suitable sedimentation, tank assuming a detention period of
5 hours and velocity of flow as 22 cm per minute.

:. Average daily demand = 8 million litres
:. Maximum daily demand = 1.8 x 8 = 14.4 million litres
= 14.4 x lo6 litres.
Quantity of water to be treated during the detention period of 5 hours

= 3 x lo3 Cubic Meters = 3000'cubic meters

:. Capacity of tank = 3000 cubic meters

Velocity of flow to be maintained through the tank = 22 cmlmin
= 0.22 mlminute. .
The length of tank required
= Velocity of flow x Detention period
= 0.22 x (5 x 60) = 66 m
Cross-sectional area of the tank required

- Capacity of the tank - 3000 - 45.45 m2, say 45.5 m2

Length of the tank 66
Assuming .water depth in the tank as 4 m, the width of the tank

- 45'5 - 11.37 m, Say 11.5 m

Hence, size of the tank = 66 m x 11.5 m x 4.m

Example 11.6
A circular sedimentation tank fitted with mechanical sludge removal unit is to
treat 4.0 million litres of water per day. The detention period of the tank is 5
boss. If depth of the tank is to be restricted to 3 m, calculate the diameter of
the tank.

Quantity of raw water to be treated per day = 4 million litres = 4 x 106 litres.
t Quantity of raw water to be treated during the detention period i e, capacity of
the tank = = 833 x lo3 litres = 833 cubic meters.
The capacity of a circular tank of depth H and Dia D is given by
Water Treatment
Volume = D2(0.1 ID + 0.785H)
833 = D2(0.1 l D + 0.785 x 3)

Solving by trial
D = 18.05 m
Hence diameter of the tank = 18.05 m
Sludge Removal from Sedimentation Tanks
The suspended material with raw water settle down at the bottom of the
sedimentation tank and it has to be removed periodicdly because retention of
sludge beyond limit reduces the capacity of the tank and detention period. In
addition, it leads to formation and evolution of certain foul gases due to the
deposition of the settled organic matter. They are cleaned from time to time either
manually or by mechanical arrangements provided in the tank for cleaning.
For manual cleaning, the tank is first put out of service and the supply of raw
water is discontinued and another cleaned tank is put in service for sedimentation.
The contained water of the tank to be cleaned is drained off till the depth remains
around 30 cm. The sludge is stirred and removed as slurry through a separate pipe
provided with a gate valve at the bottom of the tank.
In the mechanical process, sludge is scrapped and brought to the hopper at the
outlet end and is removed daily or periodically depending upon sludge deposition.
In the circular tank, the sludge is scrapped and brought to the centre and removed.
In tanks without mechanical sludge removal equipment, an additional minimum
depth of about 0.8 to 1.2 m is provided for storage of sediment, which is known as
sludge zone.


11.7.1 R e c t a n g u l a r Basins
Horizontal flow basins are most popular type of sedimentation tanks used all over
the world. In its traditional form, it resembles a large square or oblong base filled
almost to the top with water. The bottom is flat or has a slight slope and the water
is normally 3-4 m deep. Water enters at one end at or near the top and leaves at
the other end over a surface weir. There may be baffles within the main box
structure to inhibit short-circuiting. The basins are generally quite big and may
have a capacity of 3-8 hrs of throughput. Smaller ones are not so common. They
are easy to build and operate. Their considerable size makes it unlikely that sudden
changes in raw water quality will take their operators by surprise. Their cost per
unit volume is low and although they are bulky in appearance they are normally
cheap in overall cost. Therefore, they are very good performers on big works on
silty rivers and streams and can be operated by low grade staff.
As they have flat or gently sloping bottoms, they are not difficult to clean. In case
of silt-laden raw water, scrapers are installed. If silt is not too voluminous, the
basins can be emptied down occasionally in rotation and cleaned out generally with
use of high pressure jets fiom hose-pipes.
Their weaknesses are that they are prone to streaming under certain atmospheric
conditions, and they cover a large area of ground. They do not benefit by the
sludge accretion effect, and they may need to be preceded by flocculation. In cases
where flocculation has been omitted, where it would have been advisable, floc can
often be seen forming part way along the basin, the size of which still gives it Theory and Design of
time to precipitate.
The principles, which govern the design of horizontal-flow basins, have been
discussed in earlier section. The time it takes for the average suspended solids of
the water at all draw-off points above the silt line to fall to 2 mgA should be
multiplied by a factor of safety of 3 to arrive at the nominal retention capacity of
the settling zone of the basin. The factor of safety allows for inefficiency of the
basin due to streaming.
The depth of settling zone is normally about 3 m, for very turbid water and 0.6 m
should be added to silt deposition. Although it is no longer in practice to rate
basins in terms of nominal retention time but rather in terms of QIA (surface
overflow rate), it is apparent that if the depth is fairly constant at about 3 m, then
the two are directly related. A depth of 3 m is common for basins upto 60 m in
length. Above that a depthllength ratio of 1:20 is common. In Both cases 0.6 m of
extra depth is added as storage space where silt is excessive.
Table 11.3 shows the overflow velocities that are commonly used.
Table 11.3 : Recommended Overflow Velocities
for Horizontal Flow-basins

QlA, (m3/dayper m2 )
1 1

I Normal
Easy Condition Very Bad
Condition I
Without Coagulant aids 18 24

1 With Coagulant aids I 27

I 36 I 18 I
Factors, which favour settlement, are coarse-grained sediments, higher temperature
and low turbidity. Factors, which hinder it, are colloids, cold water, high turbidity
and the coincidence of peak turbidity with peak water demand. When in doubt, the
basin should be made big enough as extra capacity does not cost much more and
no work suffers because of oversized basins.
Some thought is there that long narrow basins perform better than square ones.
But a lengthlwidth ratio of 3:l has mostly been used. If sludge is voluminous,
mechanical scrapers are necessary. In a long basin, these scrap longitudinally into a
hopper at inlet end. In a square basin, the scrapers have a rotary movement and
push the sludge into a central hopper. Discharge is under hydraulic head and the
liquidized sludge may have WIV of 2% solids. To avoid settlement in the sludge
drains, velocities are kept more than 1.4 m/sec. It is preferable to put back the
sludge into the river because sludge treatment is an expensive process. The average
velocity in the basin should be below 0.02 m/s but in most of the cases velocities
are well below this.
The water coming into the basin carries floc, which is fragile and should not be
broken up as it does not easily re-form. To ensure that the floc is undamaged the
velocity in inlet pipes and channels is not to exceed 0.6 m/s and often slightly less.
The inlet channel is to run the complete width of the basin to ensure even
distributioil over the entire cross-section of the basin.
To ensure even flow, a perforated baffle wall should stretch across the full width
of the basin about 1 m from the inlet end. It should start just above surface and
terminate about 1.5 m below. The velocity through any opening should not exceed
. 0.2 mls. ..
Water Treatment One of the most important features of any basin is the outlet weir, which is
situated at the surface and has a length at least equal to the width of the basin. It
has been seen that short weirs, with high loading per unit length, induce currents
capable of picking up deposited sludge from the floor of the basin. To combat this,
the weir lip length can be increased by making the weir of trough section with
water entering over both sides and discharging sideways along the trough. In
narrow basins two or more such troughs are built. For a weir loading of 150
m3/day per m, which is the maximum favoured, a single-lipped 'weir cannot
discharge the water passing thrraugh a basin designed for a surface overflow rate of
18 m3/day per mZ if the basin exceeds 8 m in length. Multiple weirs improves the
efficiency when placed as near the outlet end as possible to avoid fouling the
scrapper arms and to ensure a fair depth below surface of clarified water.

11.7.2 Radial Flow Circular Tanks

The rectangular basin is not the best shape for scraping or for building cheaply in
concrete. Hence, keeping the merits of horizontal flow, radial flow tanks circular in
plan are designed.

There is no fundamental difference in hydraulic design between the rectangular

cross-flow tanks and circular shaped radial flow tanks. In a radial flow'basin, the
raw water enters through a central inlet and flows radially outwards towards a
continuous peripheral outlet weir. The same values for surface overflow rates are
applied and mostly same results are obtained. Radial flow velocities are not
uniform because the cross-section increases with the radius but at the maximum
cross-section minimum velocity occurs where (at the centre) it is most needed.
Small circular tanks are found to be cheaper to built in concrete than square tanks
of the same capacity. The outlet weirs present less of a problem because they can
be placed right round the outer edge of the tank. Scraping is easier because
scrapers with a rotary movement are relatively cheap and effectively clear all the

Inward-flow tanks (with water entering at the perimeter and flowing to a central
outlet) are virtually not used because of the merits described as applying to the
outward-flow basin are lost or even reversed.

11.7.3 Multi-s torey Tanks

Where spacc is limited, or for structural cheapness, multi-story tanks (Figure 11.12)
are made. It has been found that output from a basin has doubled by the
construction of a floor at mid-depth in a conventional tank because of doubling the
effective area (and halving the effective depth). As area is an importarit factor in
settling, multi-story tanks are found to be cheaper and effective. Scraping can be
confined to the upper chamber, if all water passes through the storeys in series,
because most of the deposits form at the inlet end of the top story. A typical
example of such tank designed to treat 7500 m3/day was having following criteria.
Flocculators - detention time 20 min.
Settling tanks - detention time 105 min.
- total capacity 585 m3

- usefbl capacity 520 m3


number - 2

- Storeys - 2
Theory and Design of



Figure 11.12 : Multi-storey Basin (Storeys Working in Parallel)


1 11.8.1 Hopper-bottomed Sludge Blanket Basins
A typical cross-section of a hopper bottomed sludge blanket basin has been shown
in Figure 11.13.




Figure 11.13 : Hopper Type Settling Tank

The raw water commonly with coagulants and coagulant aids is admitted. After
flash-mixing at the bottom of the inverted pyramidal base, it passes slowly upward
through a zone of previously deposited sludge. This acts to flocculate and entrap
the floc particles and greatly improves clarification. A layer of clear water in the
upper cubical shaped portion of the basin makes it possible to obkrve the top of
the sludge blanket. They are also used as water softening plants. The permissible
maximum up-flow rate is kept around 4 - 4.5 mlh.
When coagulant aids are used, river water can be treated successfully at upward
velocities of about 3 m/h but without coagulant aids velocity is kept around 1.5
I mlh. The merit of such basins is that under conditions that suit them, they can be
regarded as providing mixing, flocculation and settlement and they give a settled
wate; of more clarify. Deposited silts are removed easily without a scraper using
only the available hydraulic head. Their best feature is the ease in removal of the

In the side of each basin at a silt depth of about 1.2 m below surface a pocket of
concrete is provided in which the silt decants on reaching the silt height and from
where it is drawn off as a highly turbid liquid through a small (20 mm) dia pipe
1 into the drain. Figure 11.13 shows a sophisticated type of sludge draw off known
3q Gravielectric cone. This also serves to exclude the s1.1dge but the process has
Water Treatment got automatic control. For complete emptying of the tank, a 100 mm diameter pipe
is used. The hopper-bottomed upward flow tanks are more suitable for small works
less than 45,000 m3/day.
11.8.2 The Pulsator
The pulsator is another type of upward flow tank, which depends on a sludge
blanket for its effectiveness. It also combines the merit of having a flat bottom
with the operating simplicity of the hopper-bottomed tank. Water in this tank is
admitted at varying rates of inflow, The sludge blanket expands during the period
of maximum inflow and contracts as soon as inflow diminishes. While designing, it
is kept in consideration that the speed of inflow is not allowed to exceed limits,
which may breakup the blanket. The gentle up and down movement induced in the
sludge blanket creates a thicker, more uniform sludge zone, which improves the
clarifying action. The sludge is decanted over a wire placed at about half tank
height, and the receiving tank has a hopper bottom and there is no water
movement therein. The sludge tends to concentrate and can be ejected easily under
normal conditions.
A Pulsator in which piston spring effect is obtained by the pulsing movement
induced by variation in flow is shown in Figure 11.14. To be noted is the fact that
there is no actual piston installed in a pulsator.

Figure 11.14 : Pulsator

Tanks are generally 5 m deep. Due to their square shape and flat bottom, the
construction is cheap and the effective use of the bucket type sludge ejector makes
operation simple.

The improvement in the sludge blanket caused by gentle pulsing effect permits
upward water velocities upto 6 mk. The variation in flow rate is achieved by flow
into and out of a vacuum chamber.


When the silt content in the river becomes excessively high, upward flow basins
are more prone to failure than those working on horizontal-flow principle. A;basin
fails due to any of the following reasons :

i) Suspended solids are not precipitating.

ii) The precipitated solids are not ejected fast enough due to which the tank
44 becoming silt-logged.
The first type of problem is more common in horizontal flow basins. This occurs Theory and Derlgn of
due to incorrect coagulant dosing, poor flocculation or streaming. Although it is a
nuisance, but not catastrophic.
The second problem is more likely in the smaller highefficiency upward flow
basins and may cause complete work shut down. Once an upward flow basin gets
full of silt, it becomes unmanageable until river settles down and the basin is
washed clean. The remedy is provided by pre-settlement tanks.
Example 11.7
Design a sedimentation tank rectangular in shape to treat 2 million litres of
raw water with detention period of 2 hours and overflow rate less than 45,000
litres per day per unit surface area. ? h e water contains 700 mgA of suspended
solids, 35% of which are settleable, calculate the volume of sludge storage of
one month cleaning period.
Detention = -7------
.. Valume = Detention Period x Discharge

Assuming depth = 3 m
. Surface Area = 166.6613 = 55.55 m2
Providing 2 units of 55.5512 = 27.78 m2 each

which is less than 45000 l/d/m2

Hence, satisfying the requirement. The water contains 700 mgA of suspended
.: Total suspended solid per tank is
= 700 x lo6 mg/d and out of this 35% are settleable.

Hence, quantity of settleable suspended solids

=0.35 ~ 7 0 0 x 1 0 ~mg/d
Cleaning period = I month = 30 days
.: For 30 days quantity of settleable solick-per tarik

= 7350 kg.
Water Treatment :. Volume of sludge storage per tank
= 735011000 = 7.35 m3
= 7.5 m3

Example 11.8
For a continuous flow settling tank 3 m deep and 60 m long, what flow
velocity of water would you recommend for effective removal of 0.025 mm
particles at 2 5 ' ~ . The specific gravity of particles is 2.65 and kinematic
viscosity of water may be taken as 0.01 cm21sec.

The settling velocity v from equation 11.11

g 2
v, = -- (Gs- 1) d = 0.025 mm = 0.0025 cm

- w"@
18 0.01
(2.61 1) cm/sec

= 0.0562 cm.sec

From equation 11.20 a

V~ L
v, - H

where, vH = Flow velocity, v, = settling velocity, L = length of the tank = 60

m, H = height of water in the tank. Assume 0.6 m free-board out of the total
depth of 3 m of the tank. 1-
.: Water depth in the tank = H = 3 - 0.6 = 2.4 m 1,

:. VH = 0.0562 x -cmlsec
= 1.405 cmlsec

Therefore, to ensure effective removal of particles upto 0.025 mm, the flow
velocity in the settling tank should not be more than 1.405 cmlsec.
r-- -.. '.
SAQ 2 x-
a) Explain the sedimentation process used in a water treatment plant. Dra*
a neat sketch of a sedimentation tank:
b) Complete the dimension of a continuous flow rectangular settling tank
for a population of 25,000 persons with a daily per capita water
allowance of 135 litres. Assume detention period to be 6 hours.

c) Which are the discrete particles removed in an ideal sedimentation tank

under the following conditions-
i) Horizontal flow
.. ii) Vertical flow
! Theory and Deslgn of
There is decrease in efficiency or effectiveness of sedimentation tanks declines
when one or more of the following conditions is present :
a) Excessive suspended solids

b) Coincidence of peak output with peak turbidity

c) Low co-efficient of fineness
d) Liability of streaming
e) Overrun of water in the basin.
Excessive Suspended Solids
The effectiveness of a basin reduces if the incoming water contains excessive
suspended solids. The maximum suspended solids that an. upward flow basin can
normally take in its stride is about 900 mg/l. Horizontal flow basins, however,
withstand more than vertical flow basins. However, they should not be exposed to
suspended solids frequently more than 1000 mg/l. The commonly used surface
overflow rate of 18 m3/day per m2 together with a basin depth of about 3 - 3.5 m
gives a nominal retention time in a horizontal flow basin of 4 hours. As a
preliminary guide, this is varied up or down roughly in proportion to the ratio
between square root of the maximum suspended solids concentration (mgfl) to the
-- root of 900. A silt concentration of 500 mgfl will require retention capacity
6 0 0- 0 0 x 4 = 3 hours where as a silt concentration of 2000 mg/l will require -
/ 9-
6000/900 x 4 = 6 hours of retention period. This rule is based on thumb rule.
However, if there is frequent chances of increase in silt concentration, preliminary
basins may be provided for pre-settlement.

Coincidence of Peak Demand with Flood Discharge

In countries with. very hot summer demand rises to very high seasonal peaks above
50% or more above average. If this seasonal peak coincides with maximum
suspended solids in the river, it imposes very strenuous conditions because the
treatment plant is severely loaded at the time when maximum output has to be
maintained. Therefore, during time when silt content is high a detention period o f 6
hours, has been found to give satisfactory result.

Low Co-efficient of Fineness

The co-efficient of fineness is the ratio between the dry silt by weight (mgA) and
the,turbidity reading in JTUs, both measured under flood condition i.e. when raw
water is having high silt content. Water where the co-efficient of fineness is above
unity settle, more readily than those whose co-efficient is less than unity. Basin
capacity may be divided by the co-efficient of fineness to adjust the nominal
retention time. The value could be arrived by running laboratory tests.

The term streaming describes a condition in which the incoming water does not
mingle with the main bulk of water in the basin but passes rapidly from inlet to
outlet in a fairly well defined stream. It has been observed that some of water
entering a basin of 4 hour capacity actually passes over the outlet weir within a
few minutes. When it happens the theory of settlement is inapplicable leading to
unsatisfactory or incomplete sedimentation. The phenomenon also known as
short~circuitingis due to currents set up by water of different densities caused by
differences of temperature or silt content., The stream may be along the surface or
Water Treatment along the basin floor as per the relative temperatures of the incoming water and the
ambient air and water in the basin. In the same basin, the stream may follow
different tracks at different seasons.
Some school of thought say that judiciously placed baffle walls have prevented
streaming but according to another school of thought eddy-forming capacity of a
baffle wall causes more problems and has disadvantage of precluding the
installation of mechanical separators. A basin with two compartments in series is a
more effective solution. Some benefit also results from constructing basins, which
are long in relation to their width. Such basins have higher Froude number [V'IR~
- where v is the mean velocity and R is the mean hydraulic depth]. It has been
observed that in basins with high Froude numbers streaming is virtually eliminated.
Streaming is marked more commonly in radial flow basins because the ratio of
length of flow to width (i.e. rlnr) is lower that 1 whereas mostly all rectangular
plan basins have lengthlwidth ratio > 1.
In case of vertital flow basin streaming occurs, if draw-off weirs are at different
levels, encouraging unequal flow to different points on the surface.

In hot countries, vertical flow basins suffer from daily overturn phenomenon. This
happens in the early afternoon in the basins having hopper-bottoms. The effect is
due to water in the lower part of the basin becoming warmer than the water in the
uppFr part. This happens due to inlet pipe being laid above ground for several
hundred metres. The warmer water enters at the bottom of a hopper-bottomed basin
and as the morning sun heats the incoming flow, the contents become warmer at
the bottom and this warm sludge ladden water, being lighter than water at upper
part of the basin, rises up, and sludge-ladden currents rise suddenly to the top. The
water in the basin is completely shaken up and sludge blanket is broken. Around 4
to 5 p.m., the water leaving the basin becomes very turbid.
For protection against overturn care should be taken that a big length of inlet pipe
should not be exposed to sun.


a) A settling basin is designed to have a surface overflow rate of 32.6

miday. Determine the overall removal obtained for a suspension with
size distribution given below. The specific gravity of the particles is 1.2
and water temperature is 2 0 ' ~at which the dynamic viscosity is
1.03 x 10 - 6 m2/s.

than size (%)

b) Show that the settling velocity of a spherical particle in a liquid under

condition when Reynold's number is less than 0.5 may be given by the
expression :

Theory and Design of
11.1 1 SUMMARY Sedimentation

In this unit, the theory of sedimentation and design criteria for design of
sedimentation tanks, have been discussed. Types of sedimentation tank,
performance of different types of sedimentation tanks and causes of failure of tanks
and its remedial methods also have been discussed. After going through this unit,
you should be in a position to design a sedimentation tank or basin.


Absorption The adherence of dissolved, colloidal or finely divided
solids on the surface of solid bodies with which they
are brought into contact.
Flow Rate - Q This is the amount of water passin a plant per hour
or per day (usually expressed in m Id, m3/h or Ih),
also called capacity of a plant.
Sedimentation Tank : A tank in which water containing sediment is retained
for a sufficient time at a sufficiently low velocity to-
remove part of the ssdiment by gravity.
Settlement Tank Another name for a sedimentation tank.
Sludge The accumulated solids produced during the treatment
of sewage.
Slurry Solids mixed with water.
Suspended solids : . The solids which are suspended in an effluent.
Short-circuiting The deviation of actual flow of the tank from the flow
pattern of an ideal tank.
Surface Loading The discharge per unit plan area of a continuous type
sedimentation or settling tank (also known as overflow
rate or overflow velocity).


a) AsperEquation 11.18

Detention period for a circular tank =

o2(0.11D + 0.78%)
where, D = Dia o f t h e tank = 26 m
H = Side water depth = 2.1 rn
Q = half the total discharge as two tanks are in operation
= 26,00012 = 13,000 m3/day

=- 13,000/24 = 541.67 m3/hour

262 (0.01 1 x 26 + 0.785 x 2.1)

:. Detention Period = -

54 1.67
- 2.414 hr.
Quantity of water to be treated durino the detention period of 2.414 hr
Water Treatment

= Say 1308 m3
i) Capacity of each tank = 1308 Cubic meter
Surface area of tank =
Depth of water

ii) Overflow rate i.e. discharge per unit of surface area

- Q --13000
. Surfacearea- 623

iii) Detention time already determined = 2.414 hr.

iv) Weir loading
Length of the weir along peripheri of the tank = ED
= 3.143 x 26 = 81.71 m
Dischargeper day - -
:. Weir loading per day=
, Lengthoftheweir- 81.71

b) Detention time is the theoretical time that the water is detained in a

settling basin. It is evaluated as the volume of the tank divided by the
rate of flow and is denoted as D,= V/Q
In fact it is that time which would be required by the flow of water to
fill the tank if there were no outflow. Detention time t for a rectangular
- Volume of the tank BL.H
Rate of flow - Q

where B, L and H arc. width, length and depth of the tank and Q the
Surface loading or-svefflow rate or ovefflow velocity is defined as
discharge per unit plan area.
c) Ovefflow rate = Q/B.L
i.e. discharge per unit plan area which govern the size of the tank, when
a particular discharge is to be treated.
Overflow rate of plain sedimentation ranges between 500 - 750
a) Refer Section 11.5
b) Refer Example 11.7
c) i) In horizontal flow sedimentation tanks particles having velocity
. more than a particular settling velocity settles down. In addition,
there is an additional removal of suspended solids with that
particular settling velocit; in the ratio of v/vo where v is the
discrete particle teiminal velocity and vo critical settling velocity
eiven bv OIA
ii) Whereas in vertical flow tank, the removal of only those particles will be Theory and Design of
there, wnich is having terminal velocity equivalent or greater than uo
(critical settling velocity). Particles with lower settling velocities will be
washed out of the tank. However, once a sludge blanket is formed, this
serves to trap some particles with lower settling velocities in a form of
filtration. The removal efficiency of the tank, thus, increases as the
blanket develops. However, this growth in removal efficiency is not
readily predictable and depends on the nature of suspension being treated.

a) The overflow rate Q/B.L represents the settling velocity of particles of
size d which get removed or it can be said that particles whose settling
velocity equals or exceeds Q/BL settles down.
: Settling Velocity v, = Q/BL

From equation 1 1 . 1 1

q = Kinematic viscosity in the above equatiion and has unit of m2/s

As per question, viscosity given at 2 0 ' ~

=0.1058d2/10-~where d is in ~ r \

From table the percentage of particles in suspension equal to or heavier

than 0.06 mm size .&' 70%.

.: 70% removal will occur, because all particles and upto this size will
get removed in the basin.
Refer Section 11.3.1 and Equation (1 1.11).