Av. Dr. Sebastião Henrique C. Pontes, 8000 Galpão E
CEP 12.238-365 São José dos Campos - SP
Publicações Técnicas

Recent applications of geotextile tubes for sludge and slurry dewatering – Brazil


Nowadays one of the main

environmental problems is the impact caused by waste, remains, by-products,

materials and services. In addition, the residue from water and wastewater

treatment plants or a liquid effluent generated during any production process,

which damages may only be perceived long time after the inadequate disposal. In

order to decrease the occurrence of inadequate disposal and such impacts, in

Brazil, the National Environmental Council released in 2005 its 357th

resolution, which has set the quality standards for effluents on superficial

watercourses and classifies water bodies. To attain the most recent

law, and the new environmental preservation standards, some state and private

companies are implementing, with exponential growth, slurry and sludge

dewatering systems through geotextile tubes, as it’s only or accessory system.

This paper regards some of the Brazilian experience in geotextile dewatering

tubes, presenting some applications, such as domestic wastewater, industrial

wastewater and water treatment plants.


Geotextile tubes are a

feasible solution for dewatering slurries and sludge, from water, wastewater

and industrial effluents treatments plants, with high filtration efficiency

(Figure 8). The experience indicates that the systems is capable of reducing

water content of such residues while containing a great portion of solids. Cone tests can give good

insight about the future geotextile tube performance; in some particular cases

the dewatering can be performed without chemical conditioning, the experience

shows that this is not the usual procedure for dewatering. In water treatment plants,

the association of organic polymers used as flocculants and geotextile tubes

for dewatering can reduce chemical products consumption, environmental impacts

due to inadequate disposal of slurries with high concentration of heavy metals. The chemical conditioning,

necessity of a flocculant solution, should be evaluated according to the

particle size distribution, nature and percentage of solids present in the

residue to be dewatered. This study is of great importance for the performance

of the entire dewatering system. The solution used for the chemical conditioning

can interact or not with the particles, creating bigger particles that can be

retained by the geotextile.