Biological performance and sludge filterability of anaerobic membrane bioreactors under nitrogen limited and supplied conditions

Recep Kaan Dereli, Xiaofei Wang, Frank P. van der Zee, Jules B. van Lier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)
26 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

The impact of nitrogen on biological performance and sludge filterability of anaerobic membrane bioreactors was investigated in two lab-scale cross-flow anaerobic membrane bioreactors that were fed with cheese whey at two different COD:TKN ratios (50 and 190). Nitrogen deprivation adversely affected the biological treatment performance and reactor stability, as indicated by volatile fatty acids accumulation. On the other hand, nitrogen (urea) supplementation resulted in a reduced sludge median particle size and decreased sludge filterability. Standard filterability parameters such as capillary suction time and specific resistance to filtration tended to rapidly increase in the nitrogen supplemented reactor. The critical fluxes in the nitrogen limited and supplemented reactors were 20 and 9 L m−2 h−1, respectively. The rapid deterioration of sludge filterability under nitrogen supplemented conditions was attributed to abundant growth of dispersed biomass. Thus, the COD:TKN ratio of wastewater affected both bioconversion and filterability performance in the anaerobic membrane bioreactors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)164-172
Number of pages9
JournalWater Research
Volume137
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jun 2018

Keywords

  • Anaerobic membrane bioreactor
  • Cheese whey
  • COD:TKN ratio
  • Filterability
  • Nitrogen

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