Wastewater Treatment Processes and Technologies


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Course Overview

Well-designed and operated wastewater treatment facilities are essential for the protection of public health and the environment. Learn the key processes, technologies, and current regulations to help you design, manage and improve your wastewater facilities and projects. Course topics and features will include: 

  • Wastewater characteristics, terms, regulations 
  • Headworks, grit removal, flow measurement, screening, primary treatment 
  • Activated sludge, biological processes, nutrient removal 
  • Membrane bioreactors (MBRs) 
  • Effluent disinfection, chlorine, UV, ozone 
  • Bio-solids treatment, aerobic and anaerobic digestion 
  • Treatment costs: capital, operating, and maintenance 
  • Comparison of industrial and municipal treatment 
  • Treatment plant operations and management

Who Should Attend?

  • Wastewater engineers, operators and managers 
  • Consulting engineers 
  • Federal agencies and military bases 
  • Wastewater equipment manufacturers 
  • Others interested in wastewater treatment

Course Outline

Overview of Wastewater Treatment 

  • Wastewater characteristics
  • Discharge permits, regulations
  • Treatment processes and definitions

Headworks and Preliminary/Primary Treatment

  • Wastewater flow rates and metering
  • Screening, compaction, grit removal
  • Primary clarification

Activated Sludge Systems

  • Biological treatment principles
  • BOD and nutrient removal
  • Process configurations
  • Final clarification
  • Design and operation
  • Wet weather management

Other Biological Treatment Processes

  • Membrane bioreactors (MBRs)
  • Fixed film & hybrid processes
  • Recycle treatment
  • Wastewater treatment plants of the future

Effluent Disinfection

  • Chlorine
  • Ultraviolet light
  • Ozone
  • Typical permit requirements

Solids Treatment, Aerobic Digestion, Anaerobic Digestion

  • Typical process trains
  • Thickening and dewatering
  • Aerobic and Anaerobic Digestion – principles and technologies
  • Single-stage mesophilic, TPAD, and other approaches
  • Pros and cons of different processes

Industrial Treatment Considerations

  • Industrial wastewater characteristics
  • Treatment options

Wastewater Treatment Costs

  • Estimating project capital costs, O&M costs
  • Customer charges and rates
  • Benchmarks, examples, factors that affect cost

Smaller-scale Plants: Processes and Considerations

  • Technology options for smaller plants
  • Operating and maintenance considerations
  • Economic challenges for local governments

Plant Operations

  • Meeting discharge permits
  • Standard operating procedures 
  • Instrumentation and control
  • Operations management and troubleshooting

Design Workshop and Exercises

  • Participants will examine treatment plant scenarios, perform calculations, identify alternatives, and discuss solutions


Jim Fisher

Jim Fisher, P.E., is a senior technologist with 30 years’ experience at Jacobs (formerly CH2M Hill), specializing in treatment processes for municipal wastewater and combined sewer overflow (CSO). He has led numerous phosphorus compliance projects, including those at Madison, Appleton, Waukesha, and others. He has significant experience with process selection; capacity evaluation and design using steady state and dynamic modeling, stress testing, and bench scale testing; detail process and mechanical design; construction inspection; and facility startup and operation.

Tom Fitzwilliams

Tom Fitzwilliams is a team leader and wastewater operations manager with MSA Professional Services, Baraboo, Wisconsin. Fitzwilliams specializes in wastewater treatment plant process optimization and troubleshooting and has more than 20 years of experience in this field. He is a Wisconsin-certified wastewater operator and has participated in the planning, design, and construction of numerous wastewater treatment plants. Of particular interest are the environmental and economic challenges faced by small populations.

Alan Grooms

Alan Grooms, PE, is Operations Manager at the Madison Metropolitan Sewerage District, where he oversees treatment and process control strategies for the 42-MGD Nine Springs Wastewater Treatment Plant. He has more than 20 years of experience in wastewater treatment operations, design, and equipment, and his technical papers have been recognized with the CSWEA Radebaugh Award.

John Siczka

John Siczka, P.E., is a Senior Technologist and the Wet Weather Treatment Global Technology Leader with Jacobs. He has more than 18 years of experience in project design, studies, and planning, and leads Jacobs’ wet weather treatment service team. He has expertise in wet weather treatment technology evaluation, pilot testing, and design, as well as odor control modeling, studies, technology evaluation, testing, and design. He also has significant expertise in managing environmental operations at an industrial facility, regulatory review, and permit negotiations.

Ned Paschke

Ned W. Paschke, PE, is a professional engineer and board certified environmental engineer specializing in water and wastewater facilities. He has 40 years of experience as a consultant, manager, and university educator in this field.  Paschke has directed nationally recognized water and wastewater courses at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and he is a Professor of Practice for the UW-Madison Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering.  Prior to joining the university, Paschke was Director of Engineering for the Madison Metropolitan Sewerage District and a Hydraulic Consulting Engineer at national and international engineering firms.  He has been awarded the UW-Madison EPD Teaching Excellence award and the L. F. Harza Award for his technical publications and seminars.  He is also a Fellow and Life Member of the American Society of Civil Engineers, a J. William Fulbright Specialist, and the founder of Paschke Water Analytics, LLC.

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