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Nutrients Removal Control via an Intermittently Aerated Membrane Bioreactor

Authors: Junior B. N. Adohinzin, Ling Xu


Nitrogen is among the main nutrients encouraging the growth of organic matter and algae which cause eutrophication in water bodies. Therefore, its removal from wastewater has become a worldwide emerging concern. In this research, an innovative Membrane Bioreactor (MBR) system named “moving bed membrane bioreactor (MBMBR)” was developed and investigated under intermittently-aerated mode for simultaneous removal of organic carbon and nitrogen.

Results indicated that the variation of the intermittently aerated duration did not have an apparent impact on COD and NH4+–N removal rate, yielding the effluent with average COD and NH4+–N removal efficiency of more than 92 and 91% respectively. However, in the intermittently aerated cycle of (continuously aeration/0s mix), (aeration 90s/mix 90s) and (aeration 90s/mix 180s); the average TN removal efficiency was 67.6%, 69.5% and 87.8% respectively. At the same time, their nitrite accumulation rate was 4.5%, 49.1% and 79.4% respectively. These results indicate that the intermittently aerated mode is an efficient way to controlling the nitrification to stop at nitrition; and also the length of anoxic duration is a key factor in improving TN removal.

Keywords: Membrane bioreactor (MBR), Moving bed biofilm reactor (MBBR), Nutrients removal, Simultaneous nitrification and denitrification.

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