Deep cone vs. rake style clarifiers is an important topic in wastewater treatment. There are advantages to each that are valuable for making decisions. Deep cone and rake style clarifiers are two of the main ways to recover water. It is a common assumption that they work the same way because they are both ‘clarifiers.’ However, the two processes have very distinct differences that make each one better in certain situations.
Deep cone and rake clarifiers are settling tanks built with mechanical means for continuous removal of solids as a result of sedimentation deposits. Generally, the purpose of a clarifier is to remove solid particulates or solids that suspend in liquid for clarification and/or thickening. The sludge is all the impurities that concentrate and discharge at the bottom of the tank.
A key distinction of the deep cone is its height. Because of that, people sometimes refer to it as a “vertical” deep cone. These decanters build on the principle of static decantation. Static decantation involves the natural precipitation of solid material. Isolating the particle components first using these processes may reduce the volume of downstream water treatment processes like filtration.
This style of clarifier is ideal for the largest water flows. Their shape limits the height but includes an upper sludge thickening system. We usually recommend this type of clarifier when deep cone height is potentially greater than nine meters.
Matec makes horizontal decanters with stainless steel in the mid-size versions, like the deep cone clarifiers. Matec also makes the larger horizontal decanters with concrete.
The decantation process is similar to the vertical clarifier. The difference is the precipitation aid isn’t in the design of a cone that uses pressure to force solids down.