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Effect of advanced oxidation processes on the micropollutants and the effluent organic matter contained in municipal wastewater previously treated by three different secondary methods

Giannakis, Stefanos, Gamarra Vives, Franco Alejandro, Grandjean, Dominique, Magnet, Anoys, De Alencastro, Luiz Felippe, Pulgarin, César
Water research 2015 v.84 pp. 295-306
activated sludge, biological treatment, bioreactors, chemical oxygen demand, clarithromycin, diclofenac, environmental law, mecoprop, municipal wastewater, organic matter, oxidation, pollutants, solar radiation, triazoles, wastewater treatment, Switzerland
In this study, wastewater from the output of three different secondary treatment facilities (Activated Sludge, Moving Bed Bioreactor and Coagulation-Flocculation) present in the municipal wastewater treatment plant of Vidy, Lausanne (Switzerland), was further treated with various oxidation processes (UV, UV/H2O2, solar irradiation, Fenton, solar photo-Fenton), at laboratory scale. For this assessment, 6 organic micropollutants in agreement with the new environmental legislation requirements in Switzerland were selected (Carbamazepine, Clarithromycin, Diclofenac, Metoprolol, Benzotriazole, Mecoprop) and monitored throughout the treatment. Also, the overall removal of the organic load was assessed. After each secondary treatment, the efficiency of the AOPs increased in the following order: Coagulation-Flocculation < Activated Sludge < Moving Bed Bioreactor, in almost all cases. From the different combinations tested, municipal wastewater subjected to biological treatment followed by UV/H2O2 resulted in the highest elimination levels. Wastewater previously treated by physicochemical treatment demonstrated considerably inhibited micropollutant degradation rates. The degradation kinetics were determined, yielding: k (UV) < k (UV/H2O2) and k (Fenton) < k (solar irradiation) < k (photo-Fenton). Finally, the evolution of global pollution parameters (COD & TOC elimination) was followed and the degradation pathways for the effluent organic matter are discussed.