Improving the performance of an aerobic membrane bioreactor (MBR) treating pharmaceutical wastewater with powdered activated carbon (PAC) addition

KAYA Y. , Bacaksız A. M. , Gölebatmaz U., VERGİLİ İ. , Gonder Z. B. , YILMAZ G.

BIOPROCESS AND BIOSYSTEMS ENGINEERING, cilt.39, ss.661-676, 2016 (SCI İndekslerine Giren Dergi)

  • Cilt numarası: 39 Konu: 4
  • Basım Tarihi: 2016
  • Doi Numarası: 10.1007/s00449-016-1547-3
  • Sayfa Sayısı: ss.661-676


In this study, the effects of organic loading rate (OLR) and the addition of powdered activated carbon (PAC) on the performance and membrane fouling of MBR were conducted to treat real pharmaceutical process wastewater. Over 145 days of operation, the MBR system was operated at OLRs ranging from 1 to 2 kg COD m(-3) day(-1) without sludge wasting. The addition of PAC provided an improvement in the flux, despite an increase in the OLR:PAC ratio. The results demonstrated that the hybrid PAC-MBR system maintained a reduced amount of membrane fouling and steadily increased the removal performance of etodolac. PAC addition reduced the deposition of extracellular polymeric substance and organic matter on the membrane surface and resulted an increase in COD removal even at higher OLRs with low PAC addition. Membrane fouling mechanisms were investigated using combined adsorption fouling models. Modified fouling index values and normalized mass transfer coefficient values indicated that predominant fouling mechanism was cake adsorption.