Nutrient Removal Engineering Phosphorus and Nitrogen in Wastewater Treatment

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Course Overview

Learn the important principles, trends, and technologies to effectively remove phosphorus and nitrogen in wastewater treatment. 

This course includes: 

  • New nutrient regulations and discharge permits
  • Nitrogen and phosphorus principles
  • Detailed technologies and processes
  • BNR process models
  • Extractive phosphorus recovery
  • Adaptive management and pollutant trading
  • Plant upgrades and retrofits
  • Case studies and costs
  • Design exercises
  • Site visit to a state-of-the-art nutrient recovery facility

Who Should Attend?

  • Wastewater engineers, operators, and managers
  • Consulting engineers
  • Federal agencies and military bases
  • Regulatory staff


Course Outline

Overview of Nutrients and Nutrient Removal

  • Why are nutrients an issue?
  • Nitrogen and phosphorus cycles
  • Challenges for today’s treatment plant

Nutrient Regulations and Discharge Permits

  • Current status and trends
  • Comparison across EPA regions and states
  • MS4 systems, TMDLs

Fundamentals and Principles of Nutrient Removal

  • Raw wastewater characteristics
  • Nitrification, denitrification, anammox
  • Biological and chemical phosphorus removal
  • Sludge settling characteristics, biological selectors

Processes and Technologies for Nutrient Removal

  • Nitrogen and phosphorus removal processes
  • Conventional nitrification
  • Wuhrmann, Ludzak-Edinger processes
  • Bardenpho processes, 4-stage, 5-stage
  • Variations to conventional processes
  • A/O, A2/O, Johannesburg processes
  • Capetown, Virginia Initiative processes

Application of BNR Process Models

  • Impacts of temperature, alkalinity, carbon
  • Impacts of SRT, RAS, mixed liquor recycle rates
  • Wet weather treatment performance

Advanced BNR Processes

  • Biomag
  • Nereda

Retrofitting Plants for Nutrient Removal Technology

  • Converting conventional plants to BNR
  • Impacts on bioreactor volume, equipment, and controls

Sidestream Treatment Technologies

  • Phosphorus removal – chemical and struvite precipitation
  • Nitrogen removal – Sharon, Anammox, Anitamox, Demon processes

Nutrient Resource Recovery and Harvesting

  • Technologies and developments
  • Benefits, costs, efficiencies
  • The food-water-energy nexus
  • Struvite recovery
  • Ostara, Airprex, other technologies

Nutrient Trading and Adaptive Management Practices

  • Control of non-point sources
  • Arrangements between POTWs and landowners 

Case Studies and Examples

Tour of Nutrient Recovery Facilities at the Madison Metropolitan Sewerage District

  • Transportation to and from the plant is provided.




  • “Speakers were exceptional. Great diversity, knowledge, and presentational skills.”
  • “Great presenters, networking, and update about what is going on in the industry.”
  • “Best program in the country for professional development."


Art Umble

Art Umble, Ph.D., P.E., BCEE is a Senior Vice President and the Global Wastewater Practice Leader with Stantec. Dr. Umble has more than 25 years of wastewater experience, and has previously served as Manager of Operations for the City of Elkhart, Indiana, and as an adjunct professor of Civil Engineering at the University of Notre Dame. A nationally-recognized expert and leader in the water professions, Dr. Umble is a Fellow of the Water Environment Federation, a past chair of WEF’s Municipal Resource Recovery Design Committee, and is the author of numerous publications.

Jim Baumann

Jim Baumann is special assistant in the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources’ Bureau of Watershed Management. Mr. Baumann has more than 25 years of experience in environmental management, and he serves as contact person for the recent revisions to the State of Wisconsin’s phosphorus regulations. His experience has included permitting of wastewater treatment plants and the management of nutrients from both point sources and non-point sources.

Henryk Melcer

Henryk Melcer, PhD, PE is the Northwest Regional Process Engineer for Brown & Caldwell Consultants. Dr. Melcer has more than 30 years of experience and is widely known for his work in biological wastewater treatment processes. His experience includes applied research, pilot scale development, and full-scale process application. Prior to joining Brown and Caldwell, he served with Environment Canada’s Wastewater Technology Center. He is the author of numerous publications including the book, Methods for Wastewater Characterization in Activated Sludge Modeling.

Ned Paschke

Ned Paschke, PE, DEE, is a program director and professor of practice at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, specializing in analysis and improvement of water and wastewater systems and facilities. Before joining the UW-Madison, he was director of engineering for the Madison Metropolitan Sewerage District and a hydraulic engineering consultant for national and international engineering firms.

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Take this course when it’s offered next!

Program Director

Ned Paschke

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