Autotrophic Nitrogen Removal from Low Concentrated Effluents: Study of system configurations and operational features for post-treatment of anaerobic effluents

Javier Adrián Sánchez Guillén

Research output: ThesisDissertation (TU Delft)

35 Downloads (Pure)


On a global scale, sewage represents the main point-source of water pollution and is also the predominant source of nitrogen contamination in urban regions. The present research is focused on the study of the main challenges that need to be addressed in order to achieve a successful inorganic nitrogen post-treatment of anaerobic effluents in the mainstream. The post-treatment is based on autotrophic nitrogen removal. The challenges are classified in terms of operational features and system configuration, namely: (i) the short-term effects of organic carbon source, the COD/N ratio and the temperature on the autotrophic nitrogen removal; the results from this study confirms that the Anammox activity is strongly influenced by temperature, in spite of the COD source and COD/N ratios applied. (ii) The long-term performance of the Anammox process under low nitrogen sludge loading rate (NSLR) and moderate to low temperatures; it demonstrates that NSLR affects nitrogen removal efficiency, granular size and biomass concentration of the bioreactor. (iii) The Anammox cultivation in a closed sponge-bed trickling filter (CSTF) and (iv) the autotrophic nitrogen removal over nitrite in a sponge-bed trickling filter (STF). Both types of Anammox sponge-bed trickling filters offer a plane technology with good nitrogen removal efficiency.
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Delft University of Technology
  • van Lier, J.B., Supervisor
  • Brdanovic, D., Supervisor
  • Lopez Vazquez, Carlos, Advisor, External person
Award date21 Nov 2016
Place of PublicationLeiden
Print ISBNs978-1-138-03591-1
Publication statusPublished - 2016

Bibliographical note

Dissertation submitted in fulfillment of the requirements of the Board for Doctorates of Delft University of Technology and of the Academic Board of the UNESCO-IHE Institute for Water Education.


  • Anaerobic post treatment, Anammox, batch processing, Ammonium Oxidizing Organisms (AOO), Candidatus Brocadia fulgida, chemical oxygen demand/nitrogen (COD/N) ratio, closed sponge-bed trickling filter (CSTF), down flow hanging sponge (DHS) systems, granular biomass, immobilized biomass, mainstream nitrogen removal, Nitrite Oxidizing Organisms (NOO), nitrogen sludge loading rate, organic carbon source, partial nitritation, sponge-bed trickling filter (STF), temperature, upflow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) reactor.


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