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Fixed-bed biofilter for polluted surface water treatment using chitosan impregnated-coconut husk biochar

Lookup NU author(s): Professor David WernerORCiD


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© 2023 Elsevier LtdPelletizing biochar enables its use as a biofilter medium for polluted canal water treatment. Coconut husk biochar pellets and their modification with chitosan (CHC) were compared with conventional activated carbon pellets and gravel. The biofilter columns with these media were operated with a hydraulic loading rate of 0.1 m3/m2∙h. CHC showed the highest potential to reduce phosphate and nitrogen, via the adsorption process in the first week of filtration and later enhanced by biodegradation, to achieve removal efficiencies of 61.70 and 54.37% for these two key nutrients, respectively, over five weeks of biofilter operation. The predominant bacteria in the biofilter communities were characterized at the end of the experiments by next generation sequencing and quantitative polymerase chain reaction analysis. The biofilter communities included ammonium oxidizing, nitrite oxidizing, denitrifying, polyphosphate accumulating and denitrifying phosphate-accumulating bacteria that benefit nutrient removal. The CHC biofilter also effectively removed micropollutants, including pharmaceuticals.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Thongsamer T, Vinitnantharat S, Pinisakul A, Werner D

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Environmental Pollution

Year: 2023

Volume: 334

Print publication date: 01/10/2023

Online publication date: 03/07/2023

Acceptance date: 01/07/2023

ISSN (print): 0269-7491

ISSN (electronic): 1873-6424

Publisher: Elsevier Ltd


DOI: 10.1016/j.envpol.2023.122137

PubMed id: 37406752


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