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Study on Nitrite Accumulation Characteristics and Nitrifying Population Dynamics at Different Growth Environments

Authors: Yunxia Zhang, Jiti Zhou, Jianbo Guo, Xiuhong Zhang, Lihong Zhao, Shouzhi Yuan


Novel nitrogen removal technologies via nitrite pathway attract increasing interest in recent years. In this study, batch experiments were performed to investigate nitrite accumulation characteristics and shifts in nitrifying community structure at different growth environments including ammonia concentration, pH and alkalinity. It was found that nitrite accumulation ratios were maintained at around 95% at studied conditions, and the optimum pH and Alk/N (ratio between alkalinity and nitrogen) for ammonium oxidization were 8.5 and 8.33, respectively. Fluorescence in situ hybridization analysis of nitrifying bacteria showed that high free ammonia (from influent ammonium or caused by high pH) significantly altered the structure of nitrifying community, leading to abundance of ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB), especially Nitrososmonas, and inhibition of nitrite-oxidizing bacteria (NOB). The results suggest that free ammonia plays more important role than other studied conditions on nitrite accumulation.

Keywords: Partial nitrification, Nitrite accumulation, Nitrifyingbacteria, Fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH).

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