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A multivariate approach of changes in filamentous, nitrifying and protist communities and nitrogen removal efficiencies during ozone dosage in a full-scale wastewater treatment plant

Barbarroja, Paula, Zornoza, Andrés, Aguado, Daniel, Borrás, Luis, Alonso, José Luis
Environmental pollution 2019 v.252 pp. 1500-1508
Animalia, ammonia, bacterial communities, bioreactors, carbon, chemical oxygen demand, fish, fluorescence in situ hybridization, foaming, microscopy, morphs, multivariate analysis, nitrifying bacteria, nitrogen, ozonation, ozone, protists, variance, wastewater treatment
The application of low ozone dosage to minimize the problems caused by filamentous foaming was evaluated in two bioreactors of an urban wastewater treatment plant. Filamentous and nitrifying bacteria, as well as protist and metazoa, were monitored throughout a one-year period by FISH and conventional microscopy to examine the effects of ozone application on these specific groups of microorganisms. Multivariate data analysis was used to determine if the ozone dosage was a key factor determining the low carbon and nitrogen removal efficiencies observed throughout the study period, as well as to evaluate its impact on the biological communities monitored. The results of this study suggested that ozonation did not significantly affect the COD removal efficiency, although it had a moderate effect on ammonia removal efficiency. Filamentous bacteria were the community most influenced by ozone (24.9% of the variance explained by ozone loading rate), whilst protist and metazoa were less affected (11.9% of the variance explained). Conversely, ozone loading rate was not a factor in determining the nitrifying bacterial community abundance and composition, although this environmental variable was correlated with ammonia removal efficiency. The results of this study suggest that different filamentous morphotypes were selectively affected by ozone.