Keywords

tidal river, artificial neural network modeling, dissolved oxygen, tmdl, decision support systems

Start Date

1-7-2006 12:00 AM

Description

Beaufort and Jasper Counties are two rapidly growing coastal counties in South Carolina. According to the 2000 census, the region grew by 40 percent during the preceding 10 years. The population growth has increased the quantity of wastewater in the area. The Beaufort River is a complex tidal river system that is home to shellfish grounds, fisheries nursery habitats, and extensive recreation by the local community. The river also serves as receiving water for treated wastewater from military and civilian wastewater reclamation facilities (WRF). Although not uncommon for coastal areas, the river is on the South Carolina list of impaired waters for low dissolved oxygen. The WRFs discharging into the Beaufort River are old and operating close to their permitted capacity. A regional approach was necessary to address the complex river system issues and to protect the highly sensitive ecosystems of the Beaufort River. A regional wastewater management approach was developed that called for consolidating the military and municipal wastewater discharges into a single, high-quality discharge. This plan, however, required extensive data collection and modeling to prove its validity. Toward that end, an artificial neural network (ANN) dissolved-oxygen model was developed for the river to predict the impacts from a regional WRF. The database, ANN models, model controls, streaming graphics, and simulation output were integrated into a spreadsheet-based Decision Support System (DSS) to facilitate the dissemination of the model. Regulatory agencies and stakeholders were able to use the application to analyze data and model simulations for the permitting process. Potential wastewater management scenarios were evaluated for developing the optimal WRF loading while protecting the water quality of the Beaufort River. The DSS confirmed that a regional approach proposed by the Beaufort-Jasper Water and Sewer Authority provided the most protective solution. An effort to consolidate the military wastewater to the new regional wastewater treatment plant is currently underway.

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Jul 1st, 12:00 AM

The Role of Artificial Neural Network Models in Developing a Regional Wastewater Reclamation Facility for Beaufort, SC, USA

Beaufort and Jasper Counties are two rapidly growing coastal counties in South Carolina. According to the 2000 census, the region grew by 40 percent during the preceding 10 years. The population growth has increased the quantity of wastewater in the area. The Beaufort River is a complex tidal river system that is home to shellfish grounds, fisheries nursery habitats, and extensive recreation by the local community. The river also serves as receiving water for treated wastewater from military and civilian wastewater reclamation facilities (WRF). Although not uncommon for coastal areas, the river is on the South Carolina list of impaired waters for low dissolved oxygen. The WRFs discharging into the Beaufort River are old and operating close to their permitted capacity. A regional approach was necessary to address the complex river system issues and to protect the highly sensitive ecosystems of the Beaufort River. A regional wastewater management approach was developed that called for consolidating the military and municipal wastewater discharges into a single, high-quality discharge. This plan, however, required extensive data collection and modeling to prove its validity. Toward that end, an artificial neural network (ANN) dissolved-oxygen model was developed for the river to predict the impacts from a regional WRF. The database, ANN models, model controls, streaming graphics, and simulation output were integrated into a spreadsheet-based Decision Support System (DSS) to facilitate the dissemination of the model. Regulatory agencies and stakeholders were able to use the application to analyze data and model simulations for the permitting process. Potential wastewater management scenarios were evaluated for developing the optimal WRF loading while protecting the water quality of the Beaufort River. The DSS confirmed that a regional approach proposed by the Beaufort-Jasper Water and Sewer Authority provided the most protective solution. An effort to consolidate the military wastewater to the new regional wastewater treatment plant is currently underway.