Effect of different flocculants on short-term performance of submerged membrane bioreactor

Elsevier Inc
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Separation and Purification Technology, 2009, 70 (3), pp. 274 - 279
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This study aims at evaluating the impacts of flocculant addition to a submerged membrane bioreactor (SMBR). Three types of common flocculants (FeCl3, PACl and chitosan) were tested based on the performance of organic and nutrients removal, respiration test and fouling control. The data showed that all of the flocculants not only could keep high removal efficiencies of DOC and COD (>90%) compared to SMBR alone, but also exhibited different advantages and disadvantages according to the properties of the flocculants. For instance, inorganic flocculants strongly affected the nitrification process and organic flocculant addition slightly reduced the phosphorus removal efficiency in SMBR. After adding FeCl3 and PACl, NH4-N removal decreased to 31.9% and 11.1%, while T-N removal dropped to 22% and 0.5% respectively. Although flocculants addition improved sludge settleability and oxygen transfer to some extent, organic flocculant obtained more stable sludge volume indexes (SVI) and specific oxygen uptake rates (SOUR) than those of inorganic flocculants. Inorganic flocculants, on the other hand, led to more reduction of soluble microbial products (SMP) present in mixed liquor and lower membrane fouling rates (1.3 and 2.6 kPa/day for FeCl3 and PACl respectively).
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