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Development of Mixed Microbial Granular Biofilms for Denitrification of Concentrated Wastes

Development of Mixed Microbial Granular Biofilms for Denitrification of Concentrated Wastes,10.1016/j.egypro.2011.06.069,Energy Procedia,T. V. Krishna

Development of Mixed Microbial Granular Biofilms for Denitrification of Concentrated Wastes  
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Nitrate containing wastes are generated at various stages of the nuclear fuel cycle; fuel fabrication and reprocessing. A treatment process for removing nitrate from such concentrated nitrate bearing effluents is needed. Among other available options, biological denitrification is an economical and technically feasible method for nitrate removal. Granular biofilm based sequencing batch reactors (SBRs) may allow designing compact and high rate processes suitable for the treatment of concentrated effluents. Hence experiments were carried out in laboratory scale sequencing batch reactors (SBRs) to develop granular biofilms (composed of mixed microbes) for removing nitrate from the concentrated nitrate containing-media. Microbial granular biofilms, capable of consuming nitrate up to 2710mg/l nitrate -N, were developed under anaerobic conditions in a 6-litre volume sequencing batch reactor (SBR). The SBR was inoculated with activated sludge flocs and operated with 24-h cycle and 50% volumetric exchange ratio. Synthetic media containing acetate as the energy source and electron donor, at carbon to nitrogen molar ratio of 2:1 and 3:1 was fed into the SBRs. Nitrate-N concentration in the SBR was increased in a step-wise manner starting from 677 to 2710mg/l (1355 to 5420mg/l in the feed). Complete removal of influent nitrate occurred within the first few hours of SBR cycle period. Effluent nitrate and nitrite levels (∼3mg /l nitrate-N or nitrite-N) at the end of SBR cycle period (24h) were found to be below the discharge limits. Under these conditions biomass predominantly consisted of granular biofilms. Results show the potential of granular biofilm based SBR for converting nit rate to nitrogen gas from concentrated nitrate bearing industrial effluents.
Journal: Energy Procedia , vol. 7, pp. 507-511, 2011
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