A laboratory scale Hybrid Moving Bed Biofilm Reactor (HMBBR) was used to study the removal of five benzotriazoles and one benzothiazole from municipal wastewater. The HMBBR system consisted of two serially connected fully aerated bioreactors that contained activated sludge (AS) and K3-biocarriers and a settling tank. The average removal of target compounds ranged between 41% (4-methyl-1H-benzotriazole; 4TTR) and 88% (2-hydroxybenzothiazole; OHBTH). Except for 4TTR, degradation mainly occurred in the first bioreactor. Calculation of biodegradation constants in batch experiments and application of a model for describing micropollutants removal in the examined system showed that AS is mainly involved in biodegradation of OHBTH, 1H-benzotriazole (BTR) and xylytriazole (XTR), carriers contribute significantly on 4TTR biodegradation, while both types of biomass participate on elimination of 5-chlorobenzotriazole (CBTR) and 5-methyl-1H-benzotriazole (5TTR). Comparison of the HMBBR system with MBBR or AS systems from literature showed that the HMBBR system was more efficient for the biodegradation of the investigated chemicals. Biotransformation products of target compounds were identified using ultra high-performance liquid chromatography, coupled with a quadrupole-time-of-flight high-resolution mass spectrometer (UHPLC-QToF-MS). Twenty two biotransformation products were tentatively identified, while retention time denoted the formation of more polar transformation products than the parent compounds.
- Biological treatment