Nitrite removal in a submerged biofilter

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Nowadays submerged filters seem to be the preferred technology for denitrification purposes. Optimisation of biological nitrogen has recently been tried based on the nitrate shunt in order to save two of the involved steps. Former studies have shown that a build-up of nitrite can be achieved by an appropriate control of the nitrification process either in suspended cultures or in fixed cultures. An experimental plan was conducted to study the effect of different types of carbon source (acetate, ethanol and urban wastewater) on the performance of a submerged down flow biofilter, as well as the influence of the hydraulic loading. Results have shown that maximum nitrogen removal rates were similar for acetate and ethanol attaining values significantly higher than for urban waste water. On the other hand, nitrogen massic loading appeared to be the limiting factor for efficiency rather than hydraulic loading.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1189-1195
Number of pages7
JournalEnvironmental Technology
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2002


  • Biological treatment
  • Denitritation
  • Nitrogen removal
  • Submerged biofilter


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