Solids Separation/Constructed Wetlands System
This project is located on the Brandon Howard farm near Richlands, North Carolina. The farm is a 3,520 head finishing operation on contract with Murphy-Brown of Warsaw, North Carolina. The farm owner is serving as the technology provider for this project, with North Carolina State University faculty providing the design parameters and technical support.
This project involves the utilization of constructed wetlands for effluent treatment following primary screening and solids separation. Waste from the hog houses moves first to a solids separator, a screen that removes the solid portion of the waste stream. The solids are available for off-farm use. The remaining liquid waste flows through an 8-acre constructed wetlands filled with wetland plants. The waste is treated biologically by microbes within the root zone of the plants.
The microbial action converts nitrogen in the waste from ammonia and/or organic nitrogen to nitrogen gas via nitrification-denitrification. After moving through the wetland, the liquid flows to an irrigation pond. The constructed wetland has been in operation since late 2001 under the direct supervision of Mr. Howard. The performance evaluation team has been collecting operational and performance data since operation began.
Technology Evaluation Team
Dr. Frank Humenik
Dr. John Classen
Dr. Sarah Liehr