PMID: 15092436Jan 1, 1989Paper

Wastewater nutrient removal by Chlorella pyrenoidosa and Scenedesmus sp

Environmental Pollution
N F Tam, Y S Wong


Two different species of photosynthetic microalgae, Chlorella pyrenoidosa and Scenedesmus sp., were grown in settled and activated sewage filtrates at two different inoculum sizes, aimed to reduce nutrient load from wastewater. Higher growth rates were recorded in cultures with higher inoculum size, and algal cells usually grew better in settled sewage than in activated sewage. As algae started to grow and multiply, both nitrogen and phosphorus content in wastewater decreased significantly. The removal rate was rapid during the first week of growth and more than 2/3 of wastewater N and P was reduced. After the initial period, the removal rate slowed down. At the end of this study, more than 80% of total-P and inorganic N present in settled sewage were reduced but such removal efficiency was lower in activated sewage. In general, high inoculum size of algal cells provided more N and P removal than low inoculum, and Chlorella cells performed better than Scenedesmus. These results suggest that cultivation of Chlorella seems to be one of the feasible methods to reduce the amount of nitrogen and phosphorus entering the nearby coastal water, thus preventing the eutrophication problem. It is also clear that algal ponds with high inocu...Continue Reading


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