Aquatic environment

Batch methanogenic fermentation experiments of wastewater from a browncoal low-temperature coke plant

Peter Kuschk , Ulrich Stottmeister , Yong-Jun Liu , Arndt Wiessner , Matthias K¨astner , Roland-Arno M¨uller


Received April 27, 2009,Revised June 15, 2009, Accepted , Available online

Volume 22,2010,Pages 192-197

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Coke plant e uents with high contents of organic compounds are mainly treated by biological aerobic fermentation after physical pre-treatment. In this study, a brown coal condensate wastewater from a low temperature coking process was fermented under methanogenic conditions in discontinuous experiments. By this fermentation, acetate, propionate, and the main polyphenolic compounds (catechol, resorcinol and hydroquinone) were degraded to a level below the detection limit. The COD was reduced by 72% with a residual concentration of 2.1 g/L. This anaerobic fermented wastewater had a residual BOD5 of 0.66 g/L and 2.2 L CH4 were formed per litre of wastewater. An abiotic pre-treatment for this wastewater with air had a negative e ect on the COD reduction and decrease of colour on the methanogenic fermentation due to the autoxidation of polyphenolic compounds to humic-like compounds. This study showed that methanogenic fermentations in the treatment sequence of brown coal coking wastewaters could reduce energy consumption for aeration in further treatment processes and had the potential for a better e uent quality due to a less formation of recalcitrant humic-like compounds.

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