Sludge Treatment Reed Beds (STRBs) as a Eco-solution of Sludge Utilization for Local Wastewater Treatment Plants

  • Katarzyna KołeckaEmail author
  • Hanna Obarska-Pempkowiak
  • Magdalena Gajewska


Sewage sludge is a by-product of wastewater treatment processes. In Poland, the amout of sewage sludge has been still growing in recent years, due to inhencement of pollutants removal in wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs). One of the systems used to transform sewage sludge into fertilizer is a technology called Sludge Treatment Reed Beds (STRBs). Reed systems are periodically irrigated with sewage sludge with a low dry matter content (from 0.5 to 1.5 % DM). The accumulation time of sludge necessary to achieve stabilization is approximately 10–15 years. Sludge is transformed into humus substances. After checking the microbiological and physico-chemical properties stabilized sludge can be used for agricultural purposes. In the recent years, Denmark, France and Germany have applied integrated technologies of dewatering and stabilization of sewage sludge in these systems. The aim of the study is to present: (i) general principles for the construction and for the design of reed systems for integrated dewatering and stabilization of sewage sludge, (ii) conditions of proper operation of the systems (iii) the economic and environmental aspects of using reed technology based on the literature and our own research. Conducted research confirmed that sewage sludge dewatered and stabilized in STRBs can be used as fertilizer in agriculture.


Quality of sewage sludge Integrated dewatering and stabilization Reed beds 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Katarzyna Kołecka
    • 1
    Email author
  • Hanna Obarska-Pempkowiak
    • 1
  • Magdalena Gajewska
    • 1
  1. 1.Faculty of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Department of Water and Wastewater TechnologyGdańsk University of TechnologyGdańskPoland

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