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Anaerobic treatment of volatile and semivolatile organic compounds in municipal wastewater

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Abstract:

The potential of the expanded bed Granular Activated Carbon (GAC) anaerobic reactor in treating a municipal wastewater containing Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) volatile (VOC) and semivolatile organic compounds was studied. The GAC anaerobic reactor was followed by an aerobic nitrification tank. The GAC anaerobic reactor was operated at an empty bed residence time of 3.35 hours, whereas the nitrification tank was operated as a chemostat at a hydraulic residence time of 10 hours. A total of six VOCs (methylene chloride, chlorobenzene, carbon tetrachloride, chloroform, toluene, and tetrachloroethylene) and six semivolatiles (o-chlorophenol, naphthalene, nitrobenzene, p-nitrophenol, di-n-butyl phthalate, and lindane) were fed to the GAC anaerobic reactor each at a concentration of 1 mg/L. The VOCs and semivolatiles were fed to the reactor as a mixture along with primary effluent from a local sewage treatment plant. The GAC anaerobic reactor was found to achieve greater than 94% removal of all VOCs except chloroform, which was removed to an extent of 75%. The semivolatiles were removed in excess of 95%. The combined GAC anaerobic reactor-aerobic nitrification system was able to achieve removal efficiencies for chemical oxygen demand and ammonia-nitrogen in excess of 97%

Keywords: ACTIVATED CARBON; ANAEROBIC; CARBON TETRACHLORIDE; CHLOROBENZENE; CHLOROFORM; DI-N-BUTYL PHTHALATE; EXPANDED BED; LINDANE; METHYLENE CHLORIDE; NAPHTHALENE; NITROBENZENE; O-CHLOROPHENOL; P-NITROPHENOL; TETRACHLOROETHYLENE; TOLUENE; TRICHLOROETHYLENE; VINYL CHLORIDE

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2175/106143095X131187

Publication date: January 1, 1995

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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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