Pilot-scale evaluation of the application of low pH-inducible polyphosphate accumulation to the biological removal of phosphate from wastewaters.

John McGrath, T. Adamson, S. Irwin, John Quinn, Alan Mullan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

48 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

To investigate the possible biotechnological application of the phenomenon of low pH-inducible phosphate uptake and polyphosphate accumulation, previously reported using pure microbial cultures and under laboratory conditions, a 2000 L activated sludge pilot plant was constructed at a municipal sewage treatment works. When operated as a single-stage reactor this removed more than 60% of influent phosphate from primary settled sewage at a pH of 6.0, as opposed to approximately 30% at the typical operational pH for the works of 7.0-7.3-yet without any deleterious effect on other treatment parameters. At these pH values the phosphorus content of the sludge was, respectively, 4.2% and 2.0%. At pH 6.0 some 33.9% of sludge microbial cells were observed to contain polyphosphate inclusions; the corresponding value at pH 7.0 was 18.7%. Such a process may serve as a prototype for the development of alternative biological and chemical options for phosphate removal from wastewaters.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)296-301
Number of pages6
JournalEnvironmental Science and Technology
Volume40
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 01 Jan 2006

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Environmental Chemistry

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Pilot-scale evaluation of the application of low pH-inducible polyphosphate accumulation to the biological removal of phosphate from wastewaters.'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this