Peracetic Acid for Chlorine Replacement in Municipal Wastewater Disinfection

Peracetic Acid is a strong oxidant and disinfectant with oxidation potential higher than that of chlorine or chlorine dioxide. PAA is available in the form of equilibrium mixture which also contains hydrogen peroxide, acetic acid (vinegar) and water as shown by the following equation: 


CH3CO2H + H2O2 <-> CH3CO3H + H2O

Acetic Acid + Hydrogen Peroxide <-> Peracetic Acid + Water


USP provides full service programs for PAA applications including chemical, equipment, and service. Bulk equipment includes dosing and storage system and safety station.

Peracetic Acid Used as a Disinfection for Municipal Wastewater Effluent

  • Peracetic Acid replaces chlorine, sodium hypochlorite, and is as a low-capital alternative to UV, chlorine dioxide and ozone.
  • PAA decomposes into biodegradable components and does not create chlorinated compounds or harmful disinfection by-products.
  • Peracetic Acid has been shown to lower fecal coliforms counts quickly in effluent to satisfy discharge limits.
  • Disinfection performance not impacted by variability in nitrite or ammonia concentrations.
  • PAA can pass fish toxicity tests, showing no harm to aquatic life.
  • With the proper dose, Peracetic Acid does not alter the water quality that affects the discharge limits.
  • In most applications, Peracetic Acid does not require quenching of PAA residual.

 Benefits of Using Peracetic Acid (PAA)

  1. Highly effective microbial kill

  2. No formation of chlorinated disinfection by-products

  3. Peracetic Acid is easy to retrofit into existing chlorine contact basins

  4. Environmentally friendly decomposition products

  5. Long shelf life - 12 months minimum when properly stored

  6. Minimal pH and temperature dependence

  7. Safe, easy handling and storage


CFD Modeling Capability

(Computational Fluid Dynamics)

USP has unrivaled in-house CFD modeling expertise that can be used to optimize the injection, mixing and feed rates of PAA to meet the disinfection requirements of a facility.



USP's Peracetic Acid (PAA) Turn-key Equipment and Services

USP’s Peracetic Acid Bulk Equipment and Safety Station

USP's turn-key PAA programs provide the highest level of safety, performance and operational reliability. Our equipment systems include design, fabrication, installation and ongoing maintenance.

Dosing Module: USP skid-mounted dosing modules are custom pre-wired, pre-piped, passivated and shop tested. Power and communications panels are included.

Peracetic Acid (PAA): Available in totes and bulk, depending on the product grade and customer's location, in concentrations including 5%, 12% and 15%.

Chemical Management: USP's ChemWatch® advanced controller provides real time remote monitoring including dose rate verification, variance alarming, tank levels, leak detection and internet accessibility.

Safety: Safety shower, eyewash stations, and training for PAA and equipment orientation.

Technical and Applications Services:

  • Maintenance of storage and dosing systems
  • Preventative maintenance service visits

Download our Technical Bulletin Peracetic Acid for Municipal Wastewater Disinfection (pdf)

Download our 2014 WEFTEC Paper PAA as a Method of Effluent Wastewater Disinfection in Langley, BC (pdf)

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