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Reducing Disposal Costs for Waste and Sludge

Reduce Volume of Industrial Sludge Through Thickening, Dewatering or Drying

In the wastewater treatment process, substances are removed from the wastewater and accumulate as screenings or sludge. In addition, biological processes, but also physical and chemical treatment processes such as the flotation process that is frequently used in industrial wastewater treatment, lead to the formation of sludge.

Residues can also arise directly from industrial production in very liquid form.

HUBER Disc Thickener S-DISC
Thickening with the HUBER Disc Thickener S-DISC reduces the water content to 90 - 95%.
Q-PRESS® 280 for dewatering sludge containing impurities from earth basins
Sludge dewatering reduces volume and weight and significantly reduces sludge disposal costs.
Dewatered digested sludge from a Q-PRESS® 620.2 with 32 % DR
After dewatering with the HUBER Screw Press Q-PRESS® the sludge is stab resistant.
The sizes of the HUBER Screw Press Q-PRESS®
The HUBER Screw Press Q-PRESS® is available in four different sizes.
Solar sludge drying - fully automatic and reliable in operation
Solar sludge drying produces dry granules with the help of solar energy.
The HUBER Belt Dryer BT uses waste heat for thermal drying of sludge.

Process Technology

HUBER solutions for reduction of disposal costs

Depending on the upstream process step, the sludge has a water content of 95 to over 99%, that means it consists mainly of water. Since the disposal of such aqueous sludges is difficult and costly, and transport costs are high, these sludges have to be treated further.

The following process steps are common:
  • Sludge thickening: water content is reduced to 90 - 95%, the sludge still behaves as a liquid
  • Sludge dewatering: water content is reduced to 60 - 80 %, the sludge is stab resistant
  • Sludge drying: water content is reduced to less than 10%, the sludge is a dry material

At least the thickening and dewatering of sludge is common practice directly at the point of origin, i.e. at the industrial plant, whereas sludge drying is only economical for very large quantities of sludge and therefore tends to be carried out in external facilities.

Due to the high compaction of sewage sludge and process sludge, the dry residue (DR) is increased, transport quantities and thus transport costs are reduced to a minimum, and the sludge is optimally prepared for subsequent treatment steps.

HUBER has decades of experience in dimensioning and selecting the optimum machine technology for each sludge treatment application. The HUBER Disc Thickener S-DISC, HUBER Screw Press Q-PRESS® and HUBER Screw Press S-PRESS are mainly used for industrial applications. For preliminary assessment, laboratory tests can be carried out and container-based pilot plants can be provided.

Case Studies

HUBER Solutions in Operation

Trust is good, control is better: HUBER Sludge Turner SOLSTICE® trial dryer in the field

Rent wastewater technology from HUBER instead of buying – the solution for temporary bottlenecks and fast implementation

HUBER complete solution: sludge treatment plant at Šumperk WWTP officially inaugurated

HUBER Screw Press Q-PRESS® with world premieres at STP Sargans

HUBER Screw Press Q-PRESS® in operation at a disposal company

Sludge dewatering with the HUBER Screw Press Q-PRESS®

Case Study Dairy Crest Davidstowe Creamery, Cornwall

HUBER industrial customers go for sewage sludge dryers

Solar HUBER dryer stops rising costs for sludge disposal

HUBER sludge dewatering solution for new wastewater treatment plant in a dairy industry

Innovative Approach on the HUBER STRAINPRESS®

Research and development in the field of solar sludge drying

Q-PRESS® – The new HUBER Screw Press

HUBER Solar Active Dryers offer sustainable technology for maximum drying performance

Well Received Septic Sludge in Finland


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Frequently Asked Questions

For industrial sludge, disposal via private disposal companies, via municipal wastewater treatment plants (e.g. also co-digestion of energy-rich flotate sludge) or in approved biogas plants is common. After maximum mechanical dewatering, the sludge is often further treated thermally in drying plants and then thermally utilised or incinerated by these facilities. In the case of production sludge, reuse may also be possible.

The greatest potential for reducing disposal costs for sludge, apart from fundamental avoidance, is thickening or dewatering. In this process, the volumes and thus the quantities are reduced by removing water, while the solids content remains the same. Since billing is usually based on volume or tonnage, this reduces costs.

The maximum degree of dewatering can be determined analytically and is often referred to as the DS(A) value. This value refers to the maximum dry solids (DS) content that can be achieved by mechanical sludge treatment and, as mentioned above, depends on a variety of factors. Some types of sludge dewater to over 50 % DR, others only to 15 % DR or less.

The maximum dewatering or volume reduction depends on many factors regarding the sludge quality. For example, the loss on ignition (proportion of the mass of organic material to the total mass of the material), conductivity and, above all, the choice of the right polymeric flocculation aids play a major role. In laboratory or pilot tests, HUBER can determine the possible potentials in advance.

Biological surplus sludge, flotate sludge, primary sludge, but also other residual materials such as paper fibres, can be treated. Especially in the case of industrial sludge, however, a test should be carried out in the laboratory or with a pilot plant beforehand.


If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us!

We are always open to your enquiries and want to offer you the best possible support for your projects.

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