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Biological treatment of kraft mill wastewater

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Wastewater from an integrated bleached kraft pulp and paper mill was treated in seven parallel treatment trains. Each train consisted of three reactors in series, with the primary reactor (denoted LI) simulating an aerated equalization/stabilization lagoon with hydraulic retention time (HRT) equal to 1.5 days. The secondary (middle) reactor was different in each train. Three reactors (Rl, R2, R3) were operated at HRT = 4.5 days and the solids retention time (SRT) equal to, respectively 10, 20, and 40 days. The next three secondary reactors (R4, R5, R6) were operated at HRT = 1.5 days and SRT equal to 10, 20, and 40 days, respectively. The secondary reactor in the seventh train (R7) was operated at an HRT equal to SRT set at 1.5 days, that is, effectively operating as an aerated lagoon. The last, third or tertiary reactor in each of the series was operated as a settling lagoon with all reactors (denoted El to E7) having identical HRT = 1.5 days. All seven treatment trains have removed 5-day biochemical oxygen demand (BOD5) down to 10 mg/L. The removals of adsorbable organic halides (AOX) and soluble organic carbon (SOC) were found to be directly proportional to the biomass concentration and the SRT of the process and were the highest in the R6 reactor with SRT = 40 days and highest mixed liquor suspended solids (MLSS) of 3320 mg/L. In the activated sludge reactors Rl to R6 the removals of AOX and SOC were found to be inversely proportional to HRT, that is, the removals were larger for the reactors R4, R5, and R6 which operated at HRT =1.5 days. Overall AOX removal was the highest (30%) in the train LI → R6 → E6, and the lowest AOX removal (21%) was in the train of lagoons LI → R7 → E7. The negative effect of increased HRT on the removal of AOX and SOC was explained by biosorption since at the same SRT, the lower HRT reactors contained more than twice as much mixed liquor suspended solids.

Keywords: biological treatment; kraft mill; lagoons; organic halides; sequencing batch reactor; solids retention time

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: September 1, 1992

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  • Water Environment Research® (WER®) publishes peer-reviewed research papers, research notes, state-of-the-art and critical reviews on original, fundamental and applied research in all scientific and technical areas related to water quality, pollution control, and management. An annual Literature Review provides a review of published books and articles on water quality topics from the previous year.

    Published as: Sewage Works Journal, 1928 - 1949; Sewage and Industrial Wastes, 1950 - 1959; Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, 1959 - Oct 1989; Research Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, Nov 1989 - 1991; Water Environment Research, 1992 - present.
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