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Impact of Wastewater Treatment Process Configuration on Effluent Chemistry and Biological Responses

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This study investigated the changes of conventional parameters and selected microcontaminants (MCs) in effluents from three activated sludge (AS) systems including conventional AS (CAS), nitrifying AS (CAS-N) and biological nutrient removal (CAS-BNR) processes at pilot scale. The effluents were also characterized with a suite of biological assays and lifecycle investigations. The biological assays tests included rainbow trout acute lethality (96-h), Daphnia magna acute lethality (48-h), fathead minnow survival and growth (7-d), Ceriodaphnia dubia survival and reproduction (7-d), duckweed growth inhibition (7-d) and algal growth inhibition (72-h). Other tests included receptor binding tests (yeast estrogenic screening (YES), yeast androgenic screening (YAS) and thyroid transport receptor (T4/hTTR)) and whole organism tests (fathead minnow lifecycle exposure test, zebrafish reproduction test). For most chemistry endpoints and long-term fish health endpoints, the CAS-BNR process was the most effective in reducing contaminant concentration levels and toxic effects.

Keywords: Activated sludge; acute toxicity; bioassays; chronic toxicity; effluents; lifecycle study; microcontaminants

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: January 1, 2011

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  • Proceedings of the Water Environment Federation is an archive of papers published in the proceedings of the annual Water Environment Federation® Technical Exhibition and Conference (WEFTEC® ) and specialty conferences held since the year 2000. These proceedings are not peer reviewed.

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