A Bench-Scale Evaluation of the Reuse of Water at Highway Rest Areas

Report No: 75-R45

Published in 1975

About the report:

A pilot laboratory treatment system was successfully employed to investigate the reuse of wastewater for flushing toilets at highway rest areas. This extended aeration unit used a synthetic waste to determine if the biological system could operate efficiently at high dissolved solids concentrations produced by effluent recycle rates of up to 95 percent. Effluent quality and sludge accumulation rates were monitored, and biological solids control methods were studied. Results from pilot plant performance with and without recycle show that treatment efficiency, in terms of a biologically degradable effluent, will not be adversely affected by high recycle ratios. The use of dye to distinguish recycle water from potable water was explored. Included in this research was the selection, quantification, and removal of this artificial color from recycled effluent. Sodium fluorescein was found to be susceptible to biological attack and sunlight, and to be readily removable by carbon adsorption. The small volumes of effluent water produced by a recycle system have the potential to be impounded and either partly or completely disposed of by solar evaporation, depending on the rest area location, climatological data were used to predict net evaporation rates for a recycle facility installed at Fairfield, Virginia.

Disclaimer Statement:The contents of this report reflect the views of the author(s), who is responsible for the facts and the accuracy of the data presented herein. The contents do not necessarily reflect the official views or policies of the Virginia Department of Transportation, the Commonwealth Transportation Board, or the Federal Highway Administration. This report does not constitute a standard, specification, or regulation. Any inclusion of manufacturer names, trade names, or trademarks is for identification purposes only and is not to be considered an endorsement.


Other Authors

Robert H. Heitman, James D. Kitchen

Last updated: February 5, 2024

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