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 Geotextile Sand Filter Performance Testing at MASSTC
Stephen P. Dix
Item Number: NRL2006AC-41
Shipping Weight: 0lbs. 0oz.
Price: $20.00
Two pilot scale Geotextile Sand Filter (GSF) test cells were installed at the Massachusetts Alternative Septic System Test Center in June 2005 to evaluate effluent quality after passing septic effluent through a geotextile membrane followed by a layer of sand. This preliminary test and evaluation of this treatment process was an essential step for the manufacturer prior to installing the full-scale systems required for NSF Class 1 certification. With over 50,000 systems installed in the United States and in Sweden, the technology is widely applied with a 2/3 sizing reduction in only in a few states, however water quality data is sadly lacking. The sizing credit is based on laboratory research on soil clogging from the University of Connecticut. This includes claims that the system pretreats the effluent and mitigates the soil clogging normally associated with the application of septic effluent. Unfortunately, without third party test data and NSF certification, the future market for the product is limited by state rules and regulations. Currently, this passive pretreatment system is used extensively in New England with official accolades from state regulators in Maine, which has over 10,000 homes using this system. It is also approved for general use in West Virginia and Arizona. In Georgia where heavy clay soils receive the effluent, an experimental system status has allowed a few systems to operate and prove out the concept over the last 10 years. The water quality testing at this national center that is reported here will help document how this system performs and why the discharge of sand filtered effluent greatly improves absorption efficiency.