Fluidized-Bed Adsorption Bioreactor for the Treatment of Groundwater Contaminated with Solvents at Low Concentration
COLD REGIONS RESEARCH AND ENGINEERING LAB HANOVER NH
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Volatile organic compounds VOCs are a major source of water contamination in the U.S. They pose a threat to the environment and are a potential hazard to human health. Trichloroethylene TCE is the most common of these pollutants. TCE is usually remediated through pumping and treating it, using either air stripping or granular activated carbon. Bioremediation is an alternative treatment that uses microbes to convert hazardous substances into nonhazardous compounds. A fluidized bed adsorption bioreactor is examined here for the treatment of groundwater contaminated at low concentrations. This pilot study showed that the packed adsorbent bed could be loaded in approximately 36 hours at a flow rate of 120 mLmin. The remediation phase of the process took approximately 13 days. The reduction in the TCE concentration in the sorbent during each round indicated that it was being remediated by the microbiological process. Areas that need to be improved are the rate of remediation and the loading capacity of the adsorption beds. Currently, each complete cycle of loading and remediating requires 2 weeks while only mineralizing 58 mg of TCE per column.
- Water Pollution and Control