Author(s): Lazzari L, Sperni L, Bertin P, Pavoni B
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Abstract The nature and congener composition of PCBs and PAHs present in sewage sludge composting processes was investigated. These studies included analysis of the most significant process parameters (such as pH, temperature, weight percentage variation) and in addition heavy metals whose typical composting speciation and behaviour were also considered in order to better understand organic compound time profiles. The significant correlation found between Pb, Cd, Cu and PCBs and between PAHs and Hg implies that quite a strong adsorption of PCBs onto organic matter takes place and also provides evidence for the volatilisation of PAHs. Chemical characteristics of inorganic species and organic compounds are summarised to account for the observed correlation and time trend profiles. Moreover, single congener concentrations demonstrate that the number of Cl substituents for PCBs and condensed benzene rings for PAHs determine to what extent they can be broken down for biodegradation and removed through volatilisation respectively.
This article was published in Chemosphere
and referenced in International Journal of Waste Resources