U-Tube Aeration Operating Characterization

by Richard E. Speece,
Jack L. Adams,
Carolyn B. Wooldridge,

Serial Information: Journal of the Sanitary Engineering Division, 1969, Vol. 95, Issue 3, Pg. 653-674

Document Type: Journal Paper


A modification of U-Tube aeration, using low pressure air injection, was studied on a pilot scale. The pilot U-Tube system was made of four inch diameter pipe. Depths of 10 ft, 20 ft, 30 ft, and 40 ft were studied at flow rates up to about 300 gal per min. Air injection rates of 5%, 10%, 15%, and 20% at different depths were studied. The data were subjected to dimensional analysis and equations were derived for predicting prototype results. The effects of air injection depth, U-Tube depth and nominal water velocity on oxygen transfer economy were evaluated. The results show that water containing zero DO can be 100% saturated after one pass through a 40-ft deep U-Tube with 20% air injection. In the process of completely saturating water, the U-Tube oxygen transfer economy (#O2/HP-hr) is about the same as conventional aeration systems transferring oxygen to water with zero DO.

Subject Headings: Tubes (structure) | Oxygen transfer | Water treatment | Aeration | Pipelines | Flow rates | Water management | Fluid velocity

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