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Capacity of a horizontal subsurface flow constructed wetland system for the removal of emerging pollutants: An injection experiment

AuthorsÁvila, Cristina; Pedescoll, Anna; Matamoros, Víctor; Bayona Termens, Josep María; García, Joan
KeywordsBisphenol A
Constructed wetland
Emerging pollutant
Horizontal flow
Intermediate degradation products
Urban wastewater
Issue Date2010
AbstractA continuous injection experiment was implemented in a pilot-scale horizontal subsurface flow constructed wetland system to evaluate the behavior of four pharmaceuticals and personal care products (i.e. ibuprofen, naproxen, diclofenac and tonalide) and a phenolic estrogenic compound (i.e. bisphenol A). The treatment system consisted of an anaerobic reactor as a primary treatment, followed by two 0.65 m2 wetlands (B1 and B2) working in parallel and connected to a 1.65 m2 wetland (B3) operating in series. Overall removal efficiencies for the selected compounds ranged from 97% to 99%. The response curves of the injected pollutants show that the behavior of these compounds strongly depends on their sorption and biodegradation characteristics. While about 50% of ibuprofen was removed in B1 and B2, 99% was achieved at B3, where the dissolved oxygen concentration was significantly higher (B1–B2 = 0.5 mg L−1 and B3 = 5.4 mg L−1). Naproxen and diclofenac were efficiently removed (93%) in B1 and B2, revealing anaerobic degradation as a probable removal mechanism. Moreover, tonalide and bisphenol A were readily removed in the small wetlands (94% and 83%, respectively), where the removal of total suspended solids was 93%. Therefore, given their high hydrophobicity, sorption onto the particulate matter stands for the major removal mechanism. However, the tentative identification of carboxy-bisphenol A as an intermediate degradation product in B3 suggested biodegradation as a relevant bisphenol A removal pathway under aerobic prevailing conditions.
Publisher version (URL)http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.chemosphere.2010.08.006
Appears in Collections:(IDAEA) Artículos
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