Sago industry is one of the major small-scale sectors in India and over 800 units are located in the southern State of Tamilnadu. Processing of sago generates enormous quantities of high strength wastewater requiring systematic treatment prior to disposal. The present study is an attempt to treat the sago wastewater using Hybrid Upflow Anaerobic Sludge Blanket (HUASB) reactor, which offers the advantages of both fixed film and up flow anaerobic sludge blanket treatment. HUASB reactor with a volume of 5.6 L was operated at Organic Loading Rates varying from 10.7 to 24.7 kg COD/m3.day. After 130 days of startup, the reactor produced appreciable decrease in COD of wastewater and removed solids efficiently. The COD removal varied from 91-87%. While the removal of Total Solids was in the range of 61-57%, that of volatile solids varied from 70-67%. The ideal OLR for the reactor was 23.5 kg COD/m3.day. The findings of the study open up newer possibilities of design low cost and compact onsite treatment systems with very short retention periods.
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