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DATE: May 2013 | CREW: Kevin, Shadrack, Gypsy, Elke | SILVERADO: 1936km
Project: NET139 - Lions Sands Blackwater recycling system

Extracting the Water from Blackwater

Project brief: Water is scarce enough in the bush, help us to stop flushing it down the toilet

lion sands blackwater projectLions Sands is a game resort far out in the Sabie Sands Reserve, and when you're out in the bush, water can be a scarcity, especially if you are sharing with hordes of wild beasts. The responsible thing to do with water, everywhere, is to find ways to conserve it, to purify it for future use, and to never waste a drop. Realistically, water is more precious the gold, and a shortage of it can shorten your lifespan anywhere down to four days.

Blackwater is a nice, clean term describing sewage, and usually appears in sentences discussing the recycling of such, and the processes entailed in extracting the pure water and making it "potable" once more. The recycled water is then used to irrigate gardens, wash cars and generally returned to local water table.

Lion Sands was concerned that the precious water from their borehole was being literally flushed down the toilet. Then there was the problem of building more septic tanks, in a sacredly ecological environment such as a game reserve, and they made the decision to have it purified and reclaimed at source, with non-chemical means, which meant a cleaner environment, with more water all round.

blackwater recycling jhb dbn

Thus did we install the BioZone blackwater recycling unit, with three digester tanks, a settling tank, a clarifier and an ozonator. The effluent moves through several stages before being released back into the wild - anaerobic digestion, where certain microbiology, that lives without oxygen, is allowed to go to work on breaking up the effluent. Then it moves thru a process of agitation and aeration. This effectively changes all the microbiology from the anaerobic to the aerobic - the ones that love oxygen. It is then allowed to settle and literally 'clarify', after which, all microbiology is annihilated by exposure to ozone gas. Ozone is a three oxygen molecule which is naturally occurring, tho usually at very high altitudes and wherever electricity travels thru the air, as during lightning strikes. Ozone is produced in this way, on site.

blackwater jojo jhb dbnThe water is then pure, and as a matter of fact, incredibly nutritious, if you are a plant, since no harmful chlorine chemicals have been used, and the microbiology has completely broken up the organic matter in the effluent, making it great for the lawn, where it can filter back into the Earth and rejoin with the water table once more - the cycle is complete.

updated: Mon 1 Sep 2014


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