Los Angeles County Sanitation District–Joint Water Pollution Control Plant (JWPCP)

Carson, CA, USA


The Los Angeles County Sanitation Districts operate 11 wastewater treatment plants treating a basin-wide flow of approximately 25.2 m3/s (576 MGD) for roughly 5.0 million people located in the greater metropolitan Los Angeles County area.  Six of the District’s largest facilities are connected through a regional network of sewers and treatment facilities known as the Joint Outfall System (JOS) servicing the wastewater treatment needs of roughly 4.6 million people.  The public served by this system generates roughly 21.9 m3/s (500 MDG) of wastewater that is conveyed over 1600 km (1000 miles) of main trunk sewers to those six facilities.

The biosolids generated by the tertiary treatment of 7.23 m3/s (165 MGD) of wastewater by upstream water reclamation plants in the JOS are conveyed to the District’s largest wastewater treatment facility - the JWPCP - for final processing.  Additionally, the JWPCP itself is responsible for the treatment of 14.7 m3/s (335 MGD) of sewage.  Thus, the JWPCP is the lead facility in the treatment and disposal of the solids generated by the treatment of roughly 21.9 m3/s (500 MGD) by the JOS. 

The solids handling facilities, at the LACSD–JWPCP dewaters 1400 wet tons of digested biosolids to about 27% TS by low-speed scroll centrifuges.  Mannic, cationic polymer is added at a dose of roughly 10-12 lb of polymer per ton of dry cake to assist dewatering.  The solids are temporarily stored in sludge silos before loading onto trucks for final reuse or disposal.  This mass corresponds to about 60 truckloads per day of Class B material.  About 55% of this cake is land-applied, 36% composted off-site, and the remainder is either incinerated in a cement kiln or buried in a District-operated landfill. 

Over the past several years there had been an encroachment of housing and business development in close proximity to the JWPCP facility.  Odors from the dewatering building and the storage silos became a constant source of complaints and concern to the District.  In 2005 the LACSD tested several iterations of biofilter designs to explore the best solution to this onerous odor issue.  LACSD’s Research and Development staff learned about BacTee’s BioAer® aeration floor from a highly-satisfied end-user, a compost operations manager.  The LACSD Research and Development staffers agreed that they needed to test this new product.  After extensive testing, the LACSD’s Research and Development staff declared BacTee’s BioAer® floor system “clearly superior” to all other biofilter aeration systems.  This conclusion was based on: uniformity of air distribution, energy savings, and maintenance cost reductions due to the floor’s load-bearing capacity which allowed the largest of wheel-loaders to be used in the placement and removal of the organic substrate...all factors worthy of consideration in the design of their new biofilter with a capacity up to 340,000 m3/hr (200,000 cfm).

To fast-track the project and to insure that their selected biofilter configuration was installed in this project, a decision was made by the District to purchase the BacTee BioAer® aeration floor components in a separate negotiation followed by competitively bidding all other components, construction and startup of the completed system(s).


Completed LACSD Biofilter Bay Prior to Media Placement
18.67 m x 30.33 m (61.25’ x 99.5’)

Completed LACSD Biofilter Bay After Media Placement

Four – Cell Biofilter at LACSD Carson JWPCP

Five – Cell Biofilter at LACSD Carson JWPCP
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