C&M Aquatic Management Group Ltd. – Remote Mapping of Sludge Lagoons
Over time, wastewater lagoons fill up with accumulations of sludge—a material whose pattern, position, and volume is both difficult to accurately assess and potentially dangerous due to the presence of harmful bacteria.
With sludge accumulation older lagoons can develop water flow patterns that no longer conform to the original engineered design, resulting in greatly compromised efficiency that often requires expensive operator intervention. The most common method of determining the status of sludge requires staff to enter the lagoon in a small boat with a pole to measure the sludge levels. It’s a time-consuming and potentially inaccurate method.
In collaboration with C&M Aquatic Management Group, the CAWT student team is integrating several components of engineering, low-level robotics, waste management understanding, data manipulation, and software into its research.
To take measurements of the sludge levels, C&M’s solution requires a shoreline radio controlled, sonar and GPS equipped floating device (a small boat). The solution integrates collected data with 3D mapping software that demonstrates depth, volume, and position of sludge.
With such accurate information, C&M will be able to engineer more efficient solutions for each lagoon, in turn reducing the overall cost of operating the facility. Not to mention, the results of those solutions could be physically validated with subsequent mapping.
The CAWT team works closely with industry and technology companies to design, develop, test or improve products and services, prototype and test new technology and processes, commercialize innovative technologies, and access research funding and partners. Visit our Office of Applied Research section to learn more.