Treatment of a high-strength sulphate-rich alkaline leachate using an anaerobic filter

Waste Management
Z Wang, C J Banks


The research looks at the feasibility of treating an alkaline sulphate-rich leachate arising from the co-disposal of municipal solid waste with cement kiln dust by means of an anaerobic filter (AF). This type of leachate with a high sulphate concentration is commonly prohibited for discharge to sewer and requires an on-site treatment solution. The AF used had a working volume of 4l and contained reticulated polyurethane foam as the biomass support material. The filters were operated over a 152 day experimental period during which the COD loading onto the filter was increased from 0.76 to 7.63kgCODm(-3)d(-1). In the early stages of operation at low loading, soluble sulphides accumulated that inhibited methanogenic activity. This was restored by dosing FeCl(3) to the reactor. The continued dosing allowed efficient COD removal of between 75% and 90% until the nominal retention time in the reactor was 3 days, at which point reactor performance declined significantly. The main mechanism for COD removal was by sulphate-reducing bacteria, which also resulted in up to 88% sulphate removal from the leachate. The average methane generation rate was 0.10lg(-1) COD removed. The results indicate the potential for using this approach as a pr...Continue Reading

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