Author(s): ElBestawy E, ElSokkary I, Hussein H, Keela AF
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Abstract The main objective of the present study was to improve the quality of pulp and paper industrial wastewater of two local mills RAKTA and El-Ahlia, Alexandria, Egypt, and to bring their pollutant contents to safe discharge levels. Quality improvement was carried out using integrated chemical and biological treatment approaches after their optimization. Chemical treatment (alum, lime, and ferric chloride) was followed by oxidation using hydrogen peroxide and finally biological treatment using activated sludge (90 min for RAKTA and 60 min for El-Ahlia effluents). Chemical coagulation produced low-quality effluents, while pH adjustment during coagulation treatment did not enhance the quality of the effluents. Maximum removal of the tested pollutants was achieved using the integrated treatment and the pollutants recorded residual concentrations (RCs) of 34.67, 17.33, 0.13, and 0.43 mg/l and 15.0, 11.0, 0.0, and 0.13 mg/l for chemical oxygen demand (COD), biochemical oxygen demand (BOD5), tannin and lignin, and silica in RAKTA and El-Ahlia effluents, respectively, all of which were below their maximum permissible limits (MPLs) for the safe discharge into water courses. Specific oxygen uptake rate (SOUR) and sludge volume index (SVI) values reflect good conditions and healthy activated sludge. Based on the previous results, optimized conditions were applied as bench scale on the raw effluents of RAKTA and El-Ahlia via the batch chemical and the biological treatment sequences proposed. For RAKTA effluents, the sequence was as follows: (1) coagulation with 375 mg/l FeCl3, (2) oxidation with 50 mg/l hydrogen peroxide, and (3) biological treatment using activated sludge with 2,000 mg/l initial concentration and 90 min hydraulic retention time (HRT), while for El-Ahlia raw effluents, the sequence was (1) coagulation with 250 mg/l FeCl3, (2) oxidation with 45 mg/l hydrogen peroxide, and (3) biological treatment using activated sludge with 2,000 mg/l initial concentration and 60 min HRT. In conclusion, results confirmed that the application of the proposed sequential treatments removed almost all COD, BOD5, high molecular weight compounds, and silica from RAKTA and El-Ahlia influents and produced high-quality effluents, thus achieving the main objective of this study.
This article was published in J Ind Microbiol Biotechnol
and referenced in Journal of Aquaculture Research & Development