Efficient sludge removal from the bottom of sedimentation basins in water and wastewater treatment applications has long been a challenge. Failure to remove sludge can reduce the effective volume of the tank as well as the efficiency of the sedimentation process. The first sludge removal systems provided a solution to the problem but brought new issues related to sludge handling.

The JMS Mega-VAC (Hoseless Sludge Removal) combines proven technology with knowledge from decades of outfitting sedimentation basins. The Mega-VAC uses the hydraulic head differential between the water surface and the sludge discharge elevation. Head pressure in the basin forces sludge into the dual header orifices, and on to the discharge point for collection. This hoseless design, with proximity sensors for end of travel control, has resulted in a reliable low head-loss system, powered by gravity, effective for most water and wastewater applications.

Durability is enhanced by stainless steel and non-metallic components in all submerged parts of the Mega-VAC system. Leading edge inlet orifices eliminate clogging, and proven cable reel design allows for easy cable adjustments and maintenance.

For basins without a knee wall or other alignment option, JMS offers stainless steel curbs.

Key features

  • Reliable low profile system
  • Dual header design maximizes solids removal with less water waste
  • Powered by hydraulic head differential to lower operating costs
  • Straightforward design results in reduced maintenance
  • JMS-patented Telescoping Seal Assembly optimizes sludge removal
  • Patented flow control diagonals, create even system distribution
  • Doesn’t require track or hoses
  • Certified to ANSI/NSF-61 standards

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Success Story

The town of Gastonia, NC is not far from the JMS Charlotte facility. There, Mountain Island Lake serves as the source of water for Two Rivers Utilities. The nearly 100-year-old water plant on this site has been expanded five times over the years and now has the capability to produce up to 24 MGD to serve the area’s needs. However, there are even bigger plans for the future.

For the past year, the JMS Package Plate Settler Pilot Unit, including the Mega-VAC (Hoseless Sludge Removal System), has been onsite as one of the initial steps toward Gastonia’s largest single project, $100MM in upgrades at this plant. Under the guidance of LaBella Associates, careful consideration is being given to various plant upgrades; including membrane technology and JMS Mega-VAC sludge removal equipment. After running the JMS Pilot Unit for over a year, results have been impressive. According to those involved with the project, high-quality water is consistently delivered from the JMS Pilot Unit to the membrane filters. The JMS Mega-VAC has become a vital part of the operation.

The JMS Way


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Take pride in the quality of everything you touch and everything you do. Always ask yourself, “Is this my best work?” Every aspect of your work has your signature and makes a statement about you. Make sure it’s a statement of excellence.