Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, Vol.101, No.17, 6829-6839, 2017
Aeration control strategies to stimulate simultaneous nitrification-denitrification via nitrite during the formation of aerobic granular sludge
In this study, a sequencing batch reactor (SBR), treating synthetic wastewater (COD/N = 5), was operated in two stages. During stage I, an aeration control strategy based on oxygen uptake rate (OUR) was applied, to accomplish nitrogen removal via nitrite > 80%. In stage II, the development of aerobic granular sludge (AGS) was examined while two aeration control strategies (OUR and pH slope) maintained the nitrite pathway and optimized the simultaneous nitrification-denitrification (SND) performance. Stimulation of slow-growing organisms, (denitrifying) polyphosphate-accumulating organisms (D)PAO and (denitrifying) glycogen-accumulating organisms (D)GAO leads to full granulation (at day 200, SVI10 = 47.0 mL/g and SVI30 = 43.1 mL/g). The average biological nutrient removal efficiencies, for nitrogen and phosphorus, were 94.6 and 83.7%, respectively. Furthermore, the benefits of an increased dissolved oxygen concentration (1.0-2.0 mg O-2/L) were shown as biomass concentrations increased with approximately 2 g/L, and specific ammonium removal rate and phosphorus uptake rate increased with 33 and 44%, respectively. It was shown that the combination of both aeration phase-length control strategies provided an innovative method to achieve SND via nitrite in AGS.