Treatment of Silicon Grinder Wastewater for Water Reuse

By Ray Groves, Ph.D., Hans-Jurgen Voss, Michael Ong, and Bob McIntosh


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The treatment of fine particulate solid wastes produced by silicon manufacturing is a complex challenge. The モstandardヤ treatment using flocculation and settling has many problems, including foaming, poor settling, gas evolution, and upsets that poor quality treated water. Various other technologies have been tested, including centrifugation and membrane treatment, but in general they have not been successful. Solarworldメs plant in Hillsboro, Ore., is undergoing a rapid expansion and needs new wastewater treatment capacity. Additionally, they need to conserve and save water because of tight discharge volume limits. Candidates for process water reuse were sought and the grinding waste was ranked first because no chemicals are used in processing, and it is one of the largest flows. The project was structured as a collaborative effort between a project engineering/system integrator company (Enviroguard), the overall general contractor (Caverion NA), and the facility (Solarworld).

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