Bioresource Technology, Vol.250, 171-177, 2018
Effects of sulphur on the performance of an anaerobic membrane bioreactor: Biological stability, trace organic contaminant removal, and membrane fouling
This study investigated the impact of sulphur content on the performance of an anaerobic membrane bioreactor (AnMBR) with an emphasis on the biological stability, contaminant removal, and membrane fouling. Removal of 38 trace organic contaminants (TrOCs) that are ubiquitously present in municipal wastewater by AnMBR was evaluated. Results show that basic biological performance of AnMBR regarding biomass growth and the removal of chemical oxygen demand (COD) was not affected by sulphur addition when the influent COD/SO42- ratio was maintained higher than 10. Nevertheless, the content of hydrogen sulphate in the produced biogas increased significantly and membrane fouling was exacerbated with sulphur addition. Moreover, the increase in sulphur content considerably affected the removal of some hydrophilic TrOCs and their residuals in the sludge phase during AnMBR operation. By contrast, no significant impact on the removal of hydrophobic TrOCs was noted with sulphur addition to AnMBR.