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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2014  |  Volume : 3  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 4

Biodegradation of formaldehyde from contaminated air using a laboratory scale static-bed bioreactor


Environment Research Center, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences (IUMS), Isfahan, Iran, and Department of Environmental Health Engineering, School of Health, IUMS, Isfahan, Iran

Correspondence Address:
Yaghoub Hajizadeh
Environment Research Center, and Department of Environmental Health Engineering, School of Public Health, IUMS, Isfahan
Iran
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Source of Support: Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/2277-9183.131804

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Aims: The objective of the present study was to evaluate the performance of an aerobic fixed-bed bioreactor (FBR) enriched with microorganisms of sewage sludge in biodegradation of formaldehyde in air stream with various retention times and airflow rates in laboratory scale. Materials and Methods: An aerobic biofilter 60 cm in height and 14 cm internal diameter made of steel was constructed and packed with a mixture of pumice and compost as a medium and utilized in this study. The microorganism's growth, which is derived from the sludge of a municipal wastewater treatment plant, was initiated by adding nutrient. During the first few days of run, the airflow containing different concentrations of formaldehyde (from 24 ± 3 to 224 ± 5 mg/m 3 ) was introduced to the reactor to ensure biological adaptation. Sampling was performed through a series of two impingers containing adsorbent, and analyzed by chromotropic acid assay using DR-5000. Results: The maximum removal and elimination capacity of formaldehyde was yielded at 0.48 ± 0.06 g/m 3 /h inlet loading rate and 180 s of empty bed retention time (EBRT). These values for stabilized days were almost 88% and 0.42 g/m 3 /h, respectively. Conclusion: The results showed that by increasing the inlet concentration of formaldehyde and reducing the EBRT, the formaldehyde removal capacity of the system decreases. Aerobic bioreactor with appropriate bed volume and compatible with inlet pollutant mass flow rate in optimum retention time will admissibly degrade and reduce the formaldehyde concentration from contaminated gas phase, such as gases produced in municipal wastewater treatment facilities.


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