Anglo Coal at the new Lake Lindsay open cut mine in central Queensland’s Bowen Basin have used the FAST(Fixed Activated Sludge Treatment) transportable wastewater treatment system from CST Wastewater Solutions as a solution to solve the issue of wastewater treatment at remote workplaces and population centers.

The wastewater treatment system is applicable to other unsewered situations including construction sites, wineries, hotels and resorts, schools, shopping centers, caravan parks, sports and leisure centers, and boat marinas.

Built into a standard 20 foot shipping container, the easily transportable FAST solution installed at Lake Lindsay is designed to handle 20 cubic metres of sewage per day from the mine site. The Lake Lindsay mine is far away from the Anglo Coal’s other industrial areas to share their facilities, so requires its own equipment maintenance workshops and offices for employees. The 24/7 operation has about 60 to 80 people working on site at any one time.

Thomas & Coffey are the contractors who maintain the plant. According to Peter Anderson, Water Plant Technician Supervisor, Thomas & Coffey, treated effluent waste water from the plant is mixed with mine and runoff water and sprayed on the mine’s coal haul roads for dust suppression. Weekly, fortnightly and monthly bacterial checks are done on the effluent. Another FAST wastewater treatment system at Anglo Coal’s nearby German Creek mine has been running for about 20 years.

Supplied by CST Wastewater Solutions (formerly Contra-Shear Technology) and installed by A1 Noble, the Lake Lindsay installation represents the latest generation of Smith & Loveless FAST systems. These systems offer the following features and benefits:

  • modular design and construction
  • low sludge production
  • no moving parts, except for an air blower that provides oxygen while circulating the liquid
  • require little maintenance, with no daily operator requirements and very little annual plant maintenance
  • are robust, in terms of the process. The fixed media through which the wastewater circulates provides a high surface area to volume ratio, protecting against hydraulic shock loads

According to Michael Bambridge, Managing Director, CST Wastewater Solutions, the Smith & Loveless FAST process is now established in hundreds of Australasian sites ranging from municipal and private developments to industrial and commercial sectors, as well as specialised marine use.

Applications of FAST wastewater treatment system include mining and construction sites, petrochemical and chemical plants, pulp and paper producers, food and beverage manufacturers, wineries, meatworks, schools and universities, restaurants, shopping centers, caravan parks, boat marinas, service stations, sports and leisure centers, hotels and resorts, retirement villages, hospitals, licensed clubs and groundwater cleanup facilities.

The FAST wastewater treatment system is a simple, efficient biological system that offers safety and flexibility for the operator. With the FAST treatment system, the bacteria grow on the submerged media, and the mixed liquor circulating through the bacteria-laden media is essentially clear and free of suspended solids. This reduces the MLSS (mixed liquor suspended solids level) flow to the clarifier to approximately 100 to 400 mg/L and greatly reduces the amount of solids flux, which means less stress on the clarifier.

The history of FAST treatment system goes back to the early 1970s, when the US Coast Guard had a problem with ships cruising in coastal waters and dumping wastewater overboard, causing excessive pollution. Wastewater specialists Smith & Loveless were called in by the Coast Guard to come up with an on-board solution for these ships.

The product had to be fairly small in size, had to have low maintenance requirements since the ships’ mechanics would be looking after the system, and had to effectively treat wastewater with varying hydraulic flows. After much research and testing, the marine form of FAST treatment system was born.

It utilised a fixed-film media combined with activated sludge treatment technology so that bacteria clinging to the media would digest wastewater, producing a remarkably clear effluent that was a major improvement over the raw wastewater that had previously been going overboard. The system worked so well that Smith & Loveless engineers saw possibilities for many additional uses of the technology, producing an entire family of FAST treatment system products.

These include Mobile FAST, sometimes called Container FAST, which fits inside a standard shipping container for transport through truck, rail or ship to remote locations. A well-known application is at resorts, where the system can be moved during the year depending on where the most people are in summer or winter months.

FAST systems arrive at the job site as complete, factory-built units or as large components for easy field assembly. FAST can also be retrofitted into existing aeration tankage to boost capacity or performance without expanding the plant.

Smith & Loveless FAST system is used by the customers of CST Wastewater Solutions that include Alcoa, Bechtel Pacific, Hooker Chemicals, CSIRO, Hunter District Water, BHP Wakefield Colliery, Kiama Municipal Council, Central Coast Grammar School, Blue Circle Southern Cement, Electrolytic Zinc, Lakeside Leisure Park, Blair Athol Coal, Dampier Salt and Berowra Waters Marina.

CST Wastewater Solutions have been providing a broad range of industrial and municipal water and wastewater solutions for 25 years. CST Wastewater Solutions is a member of the Global Water and Energy Alliance, a group of select companies around the world committed to providing solutions in waste and wastewater treatment for the recovery of green energy and water.

CST Wastewater Solutions have a network of partners that include Smith & Loveless and Berson UV-techniek. CST Wastewater Solutions have a broad range of proprietary wastewater treatment equipment, which is manufactured to ISO9001 and EEC standards of safety and design.

The following are the applications which use CST wastewater treatment equipment:

  • Water and wastewater screening
  •  Grit removal and dewatering
  •  Septic receival stations
  •  Dissolved air flotation
  •  Sedimentation systems and clarifiers
  •  Shaftless conveyors
  •  Sludge dewatering
  •  Lime handling and silo systems
  •  Continuous sand filters
  •  Microfilters and screens
  •  Solar-powered circulation
  •  UV disinfection
  •  Ozone treatment
  •  Anaerobic treatment

CST Wastewater Solutions also provide expert assistance with equipment and system selection, design, installation and maintenance, as well as operation of wastewater treatment systems and delivery of complete packaged plants.