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Fate of polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons during anaerobic digestion of municipal wastewater sludges

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The fate of six polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons during anaerobic digestion of municipal sludges was investigated in a two-stage pilot-scale digester system. Primary digester removal efficiencies ranged from 23% for acenaphthene to 62% for acenaphthylene; secondary digester removal efficiencies ranged from 22% for acenaphthylene to 42% for phenanthrene. Most of the remaining mass of candidate compounds was present in the secondary digester waste sludge stream. Less than 2.5% of the candidate compounds entering the digestion system was present in the secondary digester supernatant. A dynamic model of the primary digester incorporating mixed first-order biodegradation kinetics was calibrated for each of the candidate compounds. The biodegradation rate coefficients that were estimated for the primary digester ranged from 0.004 L/g·d for acenaphthene to 0.16 L/g·d for acenaphthylene. The biodegradation rate coefficient for acenaphthene did not significantly differ from zero.
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Keywords: ANAEROBIC; DIGESTION; MODEL; POLYNUCLEAR AROMATIC HYDROCARBONS; SLUDGE TREATMENT; TOXICS

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 1995-11-01

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  • Water Environment Research (WER) is published monthly, including an annual Literature Review. A subscription to WER includes access to the latest content back to 1992, as well as access to fast track articles. An individual subscription is valid for 12 months from month of purchase.

    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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