Sorption and diffusion of micropollutants on/in biofilms: experimental observations and a model-based interpretation

Publication: Research - peer-reviewConference abstract for conference – Annual report year: 2017

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In this study we investigated the diffusion and sorption of 22 pharmaceuticals in/on nitrifying biofilms of different thickness. Experimental observations were subject to model-based interpretation and the assessment of a sorption coefficient Kd and effective diffusivity coefficient f. Three biofilm depths were obtained by using Z-carriers (AnoxKaldnes) as support, which allows tight control of biofilm thickness. Biofilms of increasing thickness had increased porosity (and thus decreasing density). Sorption was significant for the positively charged compounds at experimental pH (with few exceptions) and Kd increased with biofilm thickness. The effective diffusivity f negatively correlated with biofilm density, suggesting that diffusion of micropollutants in thinner biofilms could be limited. Overall, this study elucidated how biofilm thickness can positively influence sorption of micropollutants on biofilm as well as how diffusion limitation is strongly impact by biofilm characteristics (density and porosity) and the specific chemical.
Original languageEnglish
Publication date2017
Number of pages4
StatePublished - 2017
Event10th International Conference on Biofilm Reactors - Dublin, Ireland

Conference

Conference10th International Conference on Biofilm Reactors
Number10
CountryIreland
CityDublin
Period09/05/201712/05/2017
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