A thermodynamic analysis of the activated sludge process: Application to soybean wastewater treatment in a sequencing batch reactor



A bioenergetic methodology was integrated with a modified activated sludge model No.1 (ASM1) to analyze the activated sludge process, with the treatment of soybean-processing wastewater as an example. With the bioenergetic methodology established by McCarty and coworkers, the microbial yield was predicted and the overall stoichiometrics for biological reactions involving the key chemical and biological species in activated sludge were established. These obtained parameters were related to the ASM1 model, which was modified after coupling the biological reactions in activated sludge with electron balances. This approach was able to approximately describe the treatment of soybean wastewater by activated sludge in a sequencing batch reactor in terms of substrate utilization, biomass growth, and the elector acceptor consumption. Such an attempt provides useful information for accurate modeling of the complex activated sludge process. © 2009 American Institute of Chemical Engineers AIChE J, 2009