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Effect of Dissolved Oxygen Concentration on Nitrite Accumulation in Nitrifying Sequencing Batch Reactor

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A mathematical model based on Activated Sludge Model No. 3 (International Water Association, London) and laboratory-scale experiments were used to investigate ammonia conversion by nitrification in a sequencing batch reactor (SBR). The purpose of the study was to assess the effect of dissolved oxygen concentration on nitrite accumulation in the SBR. As the dissolved oxygen concentration in the SBR depends on the balance between oxygen consumption and oxygen transfer rates, ammonium conversion was measured for different air flowrate values to obtain different dissolved oxygen concentration profiles during the cycle. The ammonia concentration in the feeding medium was 500 mg ammonium as nitrogen (N-NH 4 +)/L, and the maximum nitrite concentration achieved during a cycle was approximately 50 mg nitrite as nitrogen (N-NO 2)/L. The air flow supplied to the reactor was identified as a suitable parameter to control nitrite accumulation in the SBR. This identification was carried out based on experimental results and simulation with a calibrated model. At a low value of the volumetric mass-transfer coefficient ( k L a), the maximum nitrite concentration achieved during a cycle depends strongly on k L a, whereas, at a high value of k L a, the maximum nitrite concentration was practically independent of k L a.

Keywords: Activated Sludge Model No. 3; nitrification; sequencing batch reactor

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: August 1, 2007

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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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