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Pathway governing nitrogen removal in artificially aerated constructed wetlands: Impact of aeration mode and influent chemical oxygen demand to nitrogen ratios

Hou, Jie, Wang, Xin, Wang, Jie, Xia, Ling, Zhang, Yiqing, Li, Dapeng, Ma, Xufa
Bioresource technology 2018 v.257 pp. 137-146
aeration, ammonium, ammonium nitrogen, anaerobic ammonium oxidation, biomass, chemical oxygen demand, constructed wetlands, denitrification, nitrifying bacteria, nitrogen
This study aimed at assessing the influence of aeration mode and influent COD/N ratio on nitrogen removal in constructed wetlands (CWs). The results showed that a simultaneous partial nitrification, anammox and denitrification (SNAD) process was established in the intermittent aerated V1. While nitrogen removal pathway gradually changed from partial nitrification-denitrification to complete nitrification-denitrification along with reducing COD/N ratio in the continuous limited aerated V2. Effective inhibition of NOBs under intermittent aeration conditions, good retention of anammox bacteria biomass and much faster depletion of COD prior to substantial NH4+-N conversion jointly led to the successful achievement of stable SNDA process with elevated influent COD/N ratios in V1. Furthermore, the presence of SNAD ensured a robust ammonium (84–92%) and TN (80–91%) removal efficiency in V1 under varying COD loading rates. In contrast, the TN removal efficiency decreased rapidly along with the reducing influent COD/N ratios in V2.