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Activated biofilm removal of low concentrations of toluene

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A two-step technique is presented for the biodegradation or transformation of low concentrations of benzene, ethylbenzene, toluene, and xylene (BETX) hydrocarbons. Step 1 incorporates the batch growth and attachment of a lush biofilm onto plastic surfaces utilizing a preselected substrate capable of stimulating desired biological activity. Step 2 involves continuous upflow biodegradation of low concentration levels of target organics by the generated biofilm. Step 1-generated biofilms are predicted to deteriorate during protracted time periods, however, extended experimental runs on the order of four months were conducted with continued bioremovals. Target organic removals during Step 2 operations, quantified by a first-order removal constant, are shown to be linked to Step 1 operating methodology.

Keywords: biological treatment; biotowers; fixed film; groundwater; remediation; toluene

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2175/WER.66.7.6

Publication date: November 1, 1994

More about this publication?
  • 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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