Lyve Systems are modular in design and construction, facilitating ease of installation and allowing for future expansion. Wineries typically producing up to 16,000 gallons per day (gpd) of wastewater can take advantage of a pre-engineered system. Larger wineries may benefit from a Lyve System custom design to meet their specific needs.
Simple Process Explanation – Wastewater produced in winemaking facilities contains mainly soluble sugars and ethanol associated with the wine. These “contaminants” are dissolved into the water and cannot be separated by mechanical means. The Lyve System uses naturally occurring bacteria to break down these compounds. The wastewater is screened using a rotary or flex rake screen to remove coarse solids. The screen mesh is sized for 0.5 – 1.0mm. An equalization tank, with the capacity to hold at least one peak day’s wastewater production, buffers the hydraulic and contaminant load surges and allows the pH to balance to some extent. A pH monitoring system adjusts the pH when required to maintain a pH value between 6.5 and 8.5.
The heart of the Lyve system is the bioreactor, where ideal conditions are maintained for bacteria to proliferate. It’s in the bioreactor where the bacteria metabolize the dissolved compounds as the wastewater flows through. Blowers supply air to a fine bubble air diffusion system. This system dissolves monitored levels of oxygen into the bioreactor to satisfy the bacteria’s respiration requirements. Nutrient levels are also maintained as the bacteria require ammonia nitrogen and phosphate for enzyme production and growth.
Under these ideal and managed conditions, the bacteria produce a gel-like substance that allows them to agglomerate and form “flocs.” These flocs are bound clusters of bacteria which also gather fine inert particles that we term suspended solids.
The next stage of the Lyve system is the clarifier. It is here where the bacterial flocs, along with any suspended solids, are separated from the water. The flocs are heavier than the water and sink to the bottom of the clarifier, and the clean water is allowed to flow over weirs, the contaminant load having been removed from the wastewater stream.
Some of these separated biological solids, referred to as sludge, are returned to the bioreactor to replenish the bacterial population and a smaller proportion are wasted to the sludge digester where ultimately they can be dewatered and the solids used for compost.
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Company Founder Wayne August developed Lyve Systems specifically for winery applications, where producers face the challenges of very high biological oxygen-demand effluent. Though he and his family still reside in New Zealand, Wayne and his wife Nanette also have a residence here in Napa. Wayne has become a well-known fixture in the Napa Valley winery operations world. Lyve Systems’ enhanced biological digester is quickly becoming the industry standard in the environmentally progressive Napa Valley.