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Activated-Sludge Yield Reduction Using Chemical Uncouplers

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To determine whether chemical additions can be used to reduce sludge production in biological wastewater treatment, uncouplers of respiratory adenosine triphosphate production were added to activated-sludge cultures. Effects of 12 uncoupling chemicals on cell yields in batch cultures were compared. The most effective of these chemicals, 2,4,5-trichlorophenol (TCP), was tested in a continuous-flow, bench-scale, completely mixed activated-sludge system treating simulated municipal wastewater. Initially, TCP addition reduced average yield by approximately 50%. After 80 days, sludge yield increased as TCP levels in the reactor decreased. Specific oxygen use rates were good indicators of sludge yields, increasing from 8 g O2/g volatile suspended solids (VSS)·d without TCP addition to approximately 20 g O2/g VSS·d, when sludge yield was lowest. These results suggest that addition of chemical uncouplers to biological wastewater treatment systems can significantly reduce sludge production, but long-term bioacclimation can eventually negate the effects of uncoupler addition.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 1999-07-01

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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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