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Use of Biodegradable Dissolved Organic Carbon to Assess Treatment Process Performance in Relation to Solids Retention Time

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A biodegradable dissolved organic carbon (BDOC) method has been developed and used to analyze secondary- and advanced-treated wastewater effluents and to investigate correlations between residual organic content and the solids retention time (SRT). Conventional biochemical oxygen demand (BOD) bottles and a 28-day incubation period were used. Secondary wastewater effluents from Hawaii were found to contain between 9.0 and 14.0 mg/L of dissolved organic carbon (DOC), of which 23 to 35% was biodegradable in the 28-day BDOC test (from a survey of nine treatment plants). Bench-scale, continuous-flow activated-sludge biological reactors treating synthetic wastewater were operated at SRTs between 2 and 15 days, and effluent BDOCs were determined. A good BDOC prediction equation was developed that incorporates the initial DOC, the DOC remaining after 5 days, and the SRT of the system from which the sample originated. This equation can be used to determine the BDOC value using data that can be obtained during a conventional 5-day BOD test. The determined equation was found to be appropriate for some of the full-scale wastewater effluent survey data.
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Keywords: BIODEGRADABLE DISSOLVED ORGANIC CARBON; ORGANIC CARBON; SECONDARY TREATMENT; SOLIDS RETENTION TIME; WASTEWATER

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2001-09-01

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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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