Low-dissolved-oxygen nitrification in tropical sewage: an investigation on potential, performance and functional microbial community

How, Seow Wah and Lim, S.Y. and Lim, P.B. and Aris, A.M. and Ngoh, Gek Cheng and Curtis, Thomas Peter and Chua, Adeline Seak May (2018) Low-dissolved-oxygen nitrification in tropical sewage: an investigation on potential, performance and functional microbial community. Water Science and Technology, 77 (9). pp. 2274-2283. ISSN 0273-1223, DOI https://doi.org/10.2166/wst.2018.143.

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.2166/wst.2018.143


Intensive aeration for nitrification is a major energy consumer in sewage treatment plants (STPs). Low-dissolved-oxygen (low-DO) nitrification has the potential to lower the aeration demand. However, the applicability of low-DO nitrification in the tropical climate is not well-understood. In this study, the potential of low-DO nitrification in tropical setting was first examined using batch kinetic experiments. Subsequently, the performance of low-DO nitrification was investigated in a laboratoryscale sequential batch reactor (SBR) for 42 days using real tropical sewage. The batch kinetic experiments showed that the seed sludge has a relatively high oxygen affinity. Thus, the rate of nitrification was not significantly reduced at low DO concentrations (0.5 mg/L). During the operation of the low-DO nitrification SBR, 90% of NH4-N was removed. The active low-DO nitrification was mainly attributed to the limited biodegradable organics in the sewage. Fluorescence in-situ hybridisation and 16S rRNA amplicon sequencing revealed the nitrifiers were related to Nitrospira genus and Nitrosomonadaceae family. Phylogenetic analysis suggests 47% of the operational taxonomic units in Nitrospira genus are closely related to a comammox bacteria. This study has demonstrated active low-DO nitrification in tropical setting, which is a more sustainable process that could significantly reduce the energy footprint of STPs.

Item Type: Article
Funders: Royal Society, Academy of Sciences Malaysia and Malaysian Industry-Government Group for High Technology (MIGHT): Newton Advanced Fellowship
Uncontrolled Keywords: activated sludge; ammonia-oxidising bacteria; biological nitrogen removal; nitrification; Nitrospira; tropical climate
Subjects: T Technology > TA Engineering (General). Civil engineering (General)
T Technology > TP Chemical technology
Divisions: Faculty of Engineering
Depositing User: Ms. Juhaida Abd Rahim
Date Deposited: 07 Aug 2019 05:00
Last Modified: 07 Aug 2019 05:00
URI: http://eprints.um.edu.my/id/eprint/21859

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