Autotrophic nitrogen removal in the mainstream wastewater treatment process is suggested to be a prerequisite of energy autarkic wastewater treatment plants (WWTP). Whilst the application of anammox-related technologies in the side-stream is at present state of the art, the feasibility of this energy-efficient process at mainstream conditions is still under development. Lower operating temperature and ammonium concentration, together with required high nitrogen removal efficiency, represent the main challenges to face in order to reach this appealing new frontier of the wastewater treatment field. In this study, we report the evaluation of the process in a plug-flow granular sludge-based pilot-scale reactor (4 m 3 ) continuously fed with the actual effluent of the A-stage of the WWTP of Dokhaven, Rotterdam. The one-stage partial nitritation-anammox system was operated for more than 10 months at 19 ± 1°C. Observed average N-removal and ammonium conversion rates were comparable or higher than those of conventional N-removal systems, with 182 ± 46 and 315 ± 33 mg-N L −1 d −1 , respectively. Biochemical oxygen demand was also oxidized in the system with an average removal efficiency of 90%. Heterotrophic biomass grew preferentially in flocs and was efficiently washed out of the system. Throughout the experimentation, the main bottleneck was the nitritation process that resulted in nitrite-limiting conditions for the anammox conversion. Anammox bacteria were able to grow under mainstream WWTP conditions and new granules were formed and efficiently retained in the system.
In this study, brown algae-modified biomass Padina sanctae crucis was used for copper (Cu(II)) and cobalt (Co(II)) heavy metal ions adsorption in synthetic wastewater. The effects of solution pH and adsorption efficiency for Cu(II) and Co(II) removal from aqueous solutions were studied. In order to study the kinetic behavior of adsorption, pseudo-first-order, pseudo-second-order kinetic models, liquid film penetration, and Ritchie second-order models were used. The results showed that the pseudo-second-order kinetic model was able to describe adsorbent behavior in comparison to the other models. Moreover, in order to study adsorbent equilibrium behavior, Langmuir and Freundlich isothermal models were used. Based on the Langmuir model, the adsorption capacity of Co(II) and Cu(II) was determined and their values were 13.73 and 13.996 mg/g, respectively. It was shown that both metal ions adsorption process is favorable and adsorption is physical. In this research, thermodynamic parameters were also studied in order to determine Gibbs free energy for both metal ions which were negative, indicating that metal ions adsorption process is spontaneous and the degree of self-adsorption increases as temperature increases.
The appropriate treatment of sanitary landfill leachate is one of the greatest challenges nowadays due to the large volumes of solid waste generated. Thus, the aim of this study is to evaluate the performance of different routes involving the integration of advanced oxidation processes based on Fenton's reagents (AOP-Fenton) and microfiltration (MF) and nanofiltration (NF) membrane processes for the treatment of landfill leachate. MF module configuration (submerged or sidestream) and MF and NF recovery rate were evaluated. The combination of AOP-Fenton, MF and NF proved to be an effective treatment for landfill leachate. High removal efficiencies of chemical oxidation demand (94-96%) and colour (96-99%) were obtained. The configuration named route 3, composed of MF of raw landfill leachate (MF1), POA-Fenton-MF2 of the MF1 concentrate and NF of both MF1 and MF2 permeates, showed a higher global water recovery and was responsible for lower waste generation. It was considered the best one in terms of environmental, technical and economical aspects.
In comparison with the thermophilic and the alkaliphilic extremophiles, halophilic microorganisms have as yet found relatively few biotechnological applications. Halophiles are involved in centuries-old processes such as the manufacturing of solar salt from seawater and the production of traditional fermented foods. Two biotechnological processes involving halophiles are highly successful: the production of β-carotene by the green alga Dunaliella and the production of ectoine (1,4,5,6-tetrahydro-2-methyl-4-pyrimidinecarboxylic acid), used as a stabilizer for enzymes and now also applied in cosmetic products, from moderately halophilic bacteria. The potential use of bacteriorhodopsin, the retinal protein proton pump of Halobacterium, in optoelectronic devices and photochemical processes is being explored, and may well lead to commercial applications in the near future. Demand for salt-tolerant enzymes in current manufacturing or related processes is limited. Other possible uses of halophilic microorganisms such as treatment of saline and hypersaline wastewaters, and the production of exopolysaccharides, poly-β-hydroxyalkanoate bioplastics and biofuel are being investigated, but no large-scale applications have yet been reported.
This study is intended to examine the ignition characteristics of a cashew nut shell biodiesel (C100) along with ethyne (acetylene) as a dual fuel in diesel engine. Cashew nut shell oil is employed in this study owing to non-toxic nature, free from sulphur, biodegradable, and free of aromatics. Ethyne gas was introduced at different flow-rate of 2, 4, 6 litres per minute (lpm). Experimental results revealed that duel fuelling ethyne gas to base fuel (C100) at 6 lpm reduce 18.1% CO, 9.7% HC, 6.87% Smoke with 11.1% increase in NOx emissions. Higher thermal efficiency was observed for ethyne- biodiesel mixture than neat biodiesel in all flow rates. Further, the heat release and peak pressure were enhanced by duel fuelling ethyne gas to base fuel (C100).
Acetogenic bacteria employing the Wood-Ljungdahl pathway can be used as biocatalysts in syngas fermentation for the production of biofuels such as ethanol or butanol as well as biocommodities such as acetate, lactate, butyrate, 2,3 butanediol, and acetone. The potential of such processes can be projected by the global syngas output, which was 70,817 megawatts thermal in 2010 and is expected to increase up to 72% in 2016. To date, different acetogens are used as commercial production strains for industrial syngas fermentations in pilot or demonstration plants (Coskata, INEOS Bio, LanzaTech) and first commercial units are expected to launch operation in the near future (INEOS Bio, LanzaTech). Considerations on potential yields are quite promising for fermentative production. New methods for metabolic engineering were established to construct novel recombinant acetogenic biocatalysts. Synthetic biology will certainly play a major role in constructing strains for commercial operations. This way, a cheap and abundant carbon source most probably replace, processes based on crude oil or sugar in the near future.
Breadnut skin, in both its unmodified (KS) and base-modified (BM-KS) forms, was investigated for its potential use as a low-cost adsorbent for the removal of toxic dye, malachite green (MG). Characterization of the adsorbents was carried out using scanning electron microscope, X-ray fluorescence and Fourier transform infra-red spectroscopy. Batch adsorption experiments, carried out under optimized conditions, for the adsorption of MG were fitted using five isotherm models (Langmuir, Freundlich, Dubinin-Radushkevich, Temkin and Sips) and six error functions to determine the best-fit model. The adsorption capacity was greatly enhanced when breadnut skin was chemically modified with NaOH, leading to an adsorption capacity of 353.0 mg g −1 , that was far superior to most reported adsorbents for the removal of MG. Thermodynamics studies indicated that the adsorption of MG was spontaneous on KS and BM-KS, and the reactions were endothermic and exothermic, respectively. Kinetics studies showed that both followed the pseudo-second order. Regeneration experiments on BM-KS indicated that its adsorption capacity was still maintained at>90% even after five cycles. It can be concluded that NaOH-modified breadfruit skin has great potential to be utilized in real-life application as a low-cost adsorbent for the removal of MG in wastewater treatment.
A central aspect of the contaminant removal by elemental iron materials (Fe-0 or Fe-0 materials) is that reduction reactions are mediated by the iron surface (direct reduction). This premise was introduced by the pioneers of the reactive wall technology and is widely accepted by the scientific community. In the meantime enough evidence has been provided to suggest that contaminant reduction through primary corrosion products (secondary reductants) does indeed occur (indirect reduction). It was shown for decades that iron corrosion in the pH range of natural waters (4-9) inevitably yields an obstructive oxide film of corrosion products at the metal surface (oxide film). Therefore, contaminant adsorption on to corrosion products and contaminant co-precipitation with corrosion products inevitably occurs. For adsorbed and co-precipitated contaminants to be directly reduced the oxide film should be electronic conductive. This study argues through a literature review a series of points which ultimately lead to the conclusion that, if any quantitative contaminant reduction occurs in the presence of Fe-0 materials, it takes place within the matrix of corrosion products and is not necessarily a direct reduction. It is concluded that Fe-0 materials act both as source of corrosion products for contaminant adsorption/coprecipitation and as a generator of Fe-II and H-2 (H) for possible catalytic contaminant reduction.
Of the variety of adsorbents available for the removal of heavy and toxic metals, activated carbon has been the most popular. A number of minerals, clays and waste materials have been regularly used for the removal of metallic pollutants from water and industrial effluents. Recently there has been emphasis on the application of nanoparticles and nanostructured materials as efficient and viable alternatives to activated carbon. Carbon nanotubes also have been proved effective alternatives for the removal of metallic pollutants from aqueous solutions. Because of their importance from an environmental viewpoint, special emphasis has been given to the removal of the metals Cr, Cd, Hg, Zn, As, and Cu. Separation of the used nanoparticles from aqueous solutions and the health aspects of the separated nanoparticles have also been discussed. A significant number of the latest articles have been critically scanned for the present review to give a vivid picture of these exotic materials for water remediation.
Activated carbons (ACs) prepared from tucumã seed (Astrocaryum aculeatum) were used for 2-nitrophenol removal from aqueous solutions. The ACs were characterized by elemental analysis, FTIR, N 2 adsorption/desorption isotherms, TGA, hydrophobicity/hydrophilicity balance, and total of acidic and basic groups. The ACs showed to have hydrophilic surfaces and they presented high specific surface areas (up to 1318 m 2 g −1 ). In batch optimization studies, maximum removal was obtained at pH 7, contact time of 30 min, adsorbent dosage 1.5 gL −1 and temperature of 50°C. The general-order kinetic model and Liu isotherm model best fit the kinetic and equilibrium adsorption data with a maximum adsorption capacity of 1382 mg g −1 at 50°C. Effect of temperature and thermodynamic studies revealed that the adsorption processes of 2-nitrophenol onto ACs are dependent on temperature and are exothermic and spontaneous, respectively. About the applicability of the ACs for treating simulated effluents, the tucumã seed-activated carbon showed an excellent outcome in the treatment of simulated effluents, evidencing its high efficiency for phenolic compound adsorption. Tucumã seed-ACs showed to be cost effective and highly efficient adsorbents for efficient removal of 2-nitrophenol from aqueous solutions.
The treatment of a landfill leachate was developed at the pilot scale using a combination of processes, including coagulation, hydrolysis acidification (HA)-sequence batch reactors (SBR) and electro-Fenton oxidation in series. The aim was to enhance the removal of pollutants in the landfill leachate, which contained high organic and NH 3 -N loadings. During the 156-day in situ operation, the average removal efficiency of the chemical oxygen demand (COD) was 97.8% and the lowest effluent COD was 78 mg/L. The removal efficiencies of colour, turbidity and total phosphorus were all higher than 97%. The overall operating cost was US$ 4.84/m 3 . This combined process showed a high potential to efficiently remediate landfill leachate at an acceptable expense.
Gamma-radiation-induced degradation of ciprofloxacin (CIP) in aqueous solution and the factors affecting the degradation process have been investigated. The results showed that CIP (4.6 mg/L) was almost completely degraded at an absorbed dose of 870 Gy. The kinetic studies of aqueous solutions containing 4.6, 10, 15 and 17.9 mg/L indicated that the decomposition of CIP by gamma irradiation followed pseudo-first-order kinetics and the decay constant (k) decreased from 5.9 × 10 −3 to 1.6 × 10 −3 Gy −1 with an increase in CIP initial concentration from 4.6 to 17.9 mg/L. The effect of saturation of CIP solution with N 2 , N 2 O or air on radiation-induced degradation of CIP was also investigated. The effects of radical scavengers, such as t-BuOH and i-PrOH, showed the role of reactive radicals towards degradation of CIP in the order of . The apparent second-order rate constant of with CIP was calculated to be 2.64 × 10 9 M −1 s −1 . The effects of solution pH as well as natural water contaminants, such as , , and , on CIP degradation by gamma-irradiation were also investigated. Major degradation products, including organic acids, were identified using UPLC-MS/MS and IC, and degradation pathways have been proposed.
This study deals with the influence of heterotrophic growth on autotrophic nitrogen removal from wastewater in a granular sludge reactor. A mathematical model was set-up including autotrophic and heterotrophic growth and decay in the granules from a partial nitritation-anammox process. A distinction between heterotrophic bacteria was made based on the electron acceptor (dissolved oxygen, nitrite or nitrate) on which they grow, while the nitrogen gas produced was 'labelled' to retrieve its origin, from anammox or heterotrophic bacteria. Taking into account heterotrophic growth resulted in a lower initial nitrogen removal, but in a higher steady state nitrogen removal compared with a model in which heterotrophic growth was neglected. The anammox activity is related with the fact that heterotrophs initially use nitrite as electron acceptor, but when they switch to nitrate the produced nitrite can be used by anammox bacteria. Increased anammox activity in the presence of heterotrophs, therefore, resulted in a marginally increased N 2 production at steady state. Heterotrophic denitrification of nitrate to nitrite also explains why small amounts of organic substrate present in the influent positively affect the maximum nitrogen removal capacity. However, the process efficiency deteriorates once the amount of organic substrate in the influent exceeds a certain threshold. The bulk oxygen concentration and the granule size have a dual effect on the autotrophic nitrogen removal efficiency. Besides, the maximum nitrogen removal efficiency decreases and the corresponding optimal bulk oxygen concentration increases with increasing granule size.
Exopolysaccharides (EPSs) make up a substantial component of the extracellular polymers surrounding most microbial cells in extreme environments like Antarctic ecosystems, saline lakes, geothermal springs or deep sea hydrothermal vents. The extremophiles have developed various adaptations, enabling them to compensate for the deleterious effects of extreme conditions, e.g. high temperatures, salt, low pH or temperature, high radiation. Among these adaptation strategies, EPS biosynthesis is one of the most common protective mechanisms. The unusual metabolic pathways revealed in some extremophiles raised interest in extremophilic microorganisms as potential producers of EPSs with novel and unusual characteristics and functional activities under extreme conditions. Even though the accumulated knowledge on the structural and rheological properties of EPSs from extremophiles is still very limited, it reveals a variety in properties, which may not be found in more traditional polymers. Both extremophilic microorganisms and their EPSs suggest several biotechnological advantages, like short fermentation processes for thermophiles and easily formed and stable emulsions of EPSs from psychrophiles. Unlike mesophilic producers of EPSs, many of them being pathogenic, extremophilic microorganisms provide non-pathogenic products, appropriate for applications in the food, pharmaceutical and cosmetics industries as emulsifiers, stabilizers, gel agents, coagulants, thickeners and suspending agents. The commercial value of EPSs synthesized by microorganisms from extreme habitats has been established recently.
The present study was designed to evaluate the photocatalytic degradation of Rhodamine B (Rh-B) in a self-assembled TiO2-assisted system under UV light irradiation. Chemical oxygen demand, total organic carbon and high-performance liquid chromatography analyses confirmed the elevated Rh-B degradation level. A stepwise meticulous breakdown pathway based on the ultra-performance liquid chromatography coupled with electrospray ionization mass spectrometry is proposed. Results demonstrated that the degradation of Rh-B mainly occurred via N-de-ethylation process, and N-de-ethylated intermediate products were further oxidized into acids and alcohols. Reduction in toxicity of the dye by the formation of metabolites was measured using human cell lines (MTT assay) and toxicity tests based on shrimp Artemia salina. Noticeably, the degraded intermediates of Rh-B revealed low or non-toxicity than the original dye molecule. Therefore, it can be inferred that the TiO2-assisted photocatalysis could be beneficial for the degradation of recalcitrant compounds and textile wastewater effluents, and for the elimination of toxicity therein.
A graphene oxide-polydopamine-(β-cyclodextrin) (GPC) ultrafiltration membrane was fabricated by using the method of drop-coating combined with vacuum filtration. The prepared GPC membrane was characterized with FTIR and XPS spectrophotometry and evaluated for its performances for the rejection of organic molecules (methylene blue) and adsorption of trace heavy metals (Pb 2+ ) from aqueous solutions. The membrane exhibited an excellent rejection coefficient of 99.2% for methylene blue and the permeation flux was 12 L m −2 h −1 at 0.1 bar. The membrane also exhibited fast adsorption kinetics for Pb 2+ and the adsorption capacity was 101.6 mg g −1 at a solution pH of 6. The performance of the membrane could almost be completely recovered after a simple clean and regeneration process. These results indicate that the GPC membrane has potential applications in treatment of complex industrial wastewater streams.
Pervaperation (PV), as a novel technology, has shown great promise in fresh water production from salty water. However, the low water flux of the present membranes hinders their practical applications. Here, a new type of PV composite membrane, consisting of a selective skin layer fabricated from poly(vinyl alcohol) (PVA) cross-linked by sulfosuccinic acid and a porous support layer using a commercial polyacrylonitrile (PAN) ultrafiltration membrane, was developed for applications in desalination. The separation performance of S-PVA/PAN composite PV membranes with different S-PVA layer thicknesses was tested in detail. The best result showed a water flux of 27.9 kg m −2 h −1 with a salt rejection of 99.8%, which was obtained at a vacuum of 100 Pa and temperature of 70°C when separating a 35,000 ppm NaCl solution. The S-PVA/PAN composite membranes could also be used for the desalination of high-concentration (100,000 ppm) NaCl solutions with a water flux of 11.2 kg m −2 h −1 with a salt rejection of 99.8%. Moreover, a stable desalination performance was obtained for a 120 h operation time. This study shows the possibility of using PV in desalination applications for seawater, brackish water and reverse osmosis concentrate treatment.
In this study, poly(N-isopropylmethacrylamide-co-methacrylic acid) microgels prepared by free radical precipitation polymerization were used as micro-reactors for the synthesis and stabilization of silver nanoparticles. UV-Visible spectroscopy, Transmission Electron Microscopy and Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy were used to characterize both pure and hybrid microgels. The catalytic reduction of 4-nitroaniline was carried out in the presence of hybrid microgels to test their catalytic activity, and the catalysis mechanism was explored by varying the concentrations of reacting species like 4-nitroaniline and NaBH 4 , as well as the dose of the catalyst. The kinetic data indicates that this reaction follows pseudo-first order. The variation in apparent rate constant (k app ) with respect to NaBH 4 concentration also discloses it to be the following Langmuir-Hinshelwood mechanism. The relationship between catalyst concentration and apparent rate constant was found to be increasing in a linear manner. The data obtained also confirmed that silver nanoparticles loaded microgels have the potential to be used as an excellent micro-reactor for selective reduction of 4-nitroaniline to p-phenylenediamine.
Prior to mechanical dewatering, sludge conditioning is indispensable to reduce the difficulty of sludge treatment and disposal. The effect of bioacidification conditioning driven by Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans LX5 on the dewatering rate and extent of sewage sludge during compression dewatering process was investigated in this study. The results showed that the bioacidification of sludge driven by A. ferrooxidans LX5 simultaneously improved both the sludge dewatering rate and extent, which was not attained by physical/chemical conditioning approaches, including ultrasonication, microwave, freezing/thawing, or by adding the chemical conditioner cationic polyacrylamide (CPAM). During the bioacidification of sludge, the decrease in sludge pH induced the damage of sludge microbial cell structures, which enhanced the dewatering extent of sludge, and the added Fe 2+ and the subsequent bio-oxidized Fe 3+ effectively flocculated the damaged sludge flocs to improve the sludge dewatering rate. In the compression dewatering process consisting of filtration and expression stages, high removal of moisture and a short dewatering time were achieved during the filtration stage and the expression kinetics were also improved because of the high elasticity of sludge cake and the rapid creeping of the aggregates within the sludge cake. In addition, the usefulness of bioacidification driven by A. ferrooxidans LX5 in improving the compression dewatering of sewage sludge could not be attained by the chemical treatment of sludge through pH modification and Fe 3+ addition. Therefore, the bioacidification of sludge driven by A. ferrooxidans LX5 is an effective conditioning method to simultaneously improve the rate and extent of compression dewatering of sewage sludge.