Application of anaerobic membrane bioreactors for the treatment of protein-containing wastewaters under saline conditions
Article first published online: 20 JUL 2012
© 2012 Society of Chemical Industry
Journal of Chemical Technology and Biotechnology
Volume 88, Issue 4, pages 658–663, April 2013
How to Cite
Hemmelmann, A., Torres, A., Vergara, C., Azocar, L. and Jeison, D. (2013), Application of anaerobic membrane bioreactors for the treatment of protein-containing wastewaters under saline conditions. J. Chem. Technol. Biotechnol., 88: 658–663. doi: 10.1002/jctb.3882
- Issue published online: 20 MAR 2013
- Article first published online: 20 JUL 2012
- Manuscript Accepted: 6 JUN 2012
- Manuscript Revised: 30 MAY 2012
- Manuscript Received: 19 APR 2012
BACKGROUND: Anaerobic treatment of saline wastewaters may be hindered by problems related with biomass retention, since at high salt concentrations formation of biofilms and granules may not proceed well. This research studied the use of anaerobic membrane bioreactors (AnMBR) as a way to promote complete biomass retention. A lab scale AnMBR fitted with a ceramic tubular membrane was operated for 2 years.
RESULTS: Results showed that enhanced biomass retention produces conditions enabling anaerobic treatment of saline wastewaters. Despite the high resulting sludge retention time, no accumulation of a high proportion of dead cells was observed. Protein degradation and not methanogenesis was shown to be the rate limiting step for organic matter degradation, a fact that is relevant for protein-containing wastewaters such as those from seafood processing industries. Only low levels of flux could be applied, in the region of 5 L m−2 h−1 due to reversible cake formation promoted by single cell growth.
CONCLUSION: Biomass retention provided by membrane filtration promotes conditions suitable for efficient treatment of saline wastewaters. However, operation may be restricted to low values of flux due to biomass development as single cells. © 2012 Society of Chemical Industry