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Title

Capability of microalgae-based wastewater treatment systems to remove emerging organic contaminants: A pilot-scale study

AuthorsMatamoros, Víctor CSIC ORCID ; Gutiérrez, Raquel; Ferrer, Ivet; García, Joan; Bayona Termens, Josep María
KeywordsBiodegradation
Emerging organic contaminants
High-rate algal pond
Microalgae
Photodegradation
Volatilization
Issue Date13-May-2015
AbstractThe effect of hydraulic retention time (HRT) and seasonality on the removal efficiency of 26 organic microcontaminants from urban wastewater was studied in two pilot high-rate algal ponds (HRAPs). The targeted compounds included pharmaceuticals and personal care products, fire retardants, surfactants, anticorrosive agents, pesticides and plasticizers, among others. The pilot plant, which was fed at a surface loading rate of 7-29g of COD m-2d-1, consisted of a homogenisation tank and two parallel lines, each one with a primary settler and an HRAP with a surface area of 1.5m2 and a volume of 0.5m3. The two HRAPs were operated with different HRTs (4 and 8d). The removal efficiency ranged from negligible removal to more than 90% depending on the compound. Microcontaminant removal efficiencies were enhanced during the warm season, while the HRT effect on microcontaminant removal was only noticeable in the cold season. Our results suggest that biodegradation and photodegradation are the most important removal pathways, whereas volatilization and sorption were solely achieved for hydrophobic compounds (log Kow>4) with a moderately high Henry's law constant values (11-12Pam-3mol-1) such as musk fragrances. Whereas acetaminophen, ibuprofen and oxybenzone presented ecotoxicological hazard quotients (HQs) higher than 1 in the influent wastewater samples, the HQs for the effluent water samples were always below 1.
Publisher version (URL)10.1016/j.jhazmat.2015.02.002
URIhttp://hdl.handle.net/10261/115099
DOIhttp://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jhazmat.2015.02.002
Appears in Collections:(IDAEA) Artículos
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