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Impact of Applying Electrocoagulation Pre-treatment Step on Grey Water Treatment by Submerged Membrane Bioreactor

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Chemical coagulation is widely used for enhancing the performance of various water and wastewater treatment systems, including membrane filtration processes such as submerged membrane bioreactor (SMBR) units. However, the addition of chemicals to the wastewater may result in production of undesirable chemical by-products or increase the volume of sludge in the bioreactor. Alternatively, applying electrocoagulation (EC) technique has been shown to be a promising and novel approach in SMBR applications. In this study, the impact of applying EC step was investigated as a pretreatment stage for grey water treatment by SMBR system. The main objective of the present study was to investigate the performance of the integrated process of EC-SMBR under different voltage gradients. The performance of the integrated process of (EC-SMBR) was compared with the operation of a SMBR system operated alone. The comparison was achieved in two sequential operational phases in which two different voltage gradients were applied in the EC step. In both phases, aluminium electrodes were used. The results indicated that the EC unit can contribute in improving the SMBR performance if an adequate voltage gradient was applied in EC step. The improvement was observed clearly in Phase II when a voltage gradient of 1.26 V/cm was applied. Applying a low level of voltage gradient of 0.64 V/cm (Phase I) in EC step did not exhibit a significant improvement in pollutant removals.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2012-01-01

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