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Processes 2014, 2(1), 293-310; doi:10.3390/pr2010293
Review

Flotation of Biological Materials

1,2
 and 2,*
1 Department of Petroleum and Natural Gas Technology, Technological Educational Institute of Kavala, Kavala GR-654 04, Greece 2 Division of Chemical Technology & Industrial Chemistry, Department of Chemistry, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Thessaloniki GR-541 24, Greece
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 30 December 2013 / Revised: 10 February 2014 / Accepted: 11 February 2014 / Published: 12 March 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Bioseparation Engineering)
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Abstract

Flotation constitutes a gravity separation process, which originated from the minerals processing field. However, it has, nowadays, found several other applications, as for example in the wastewater treatment field. Concerning the necessary bubble generation method, typically dispersed-air or dissolved-air flotation was mainly used. Various types of biological materials were tested and floated efficiently, such as bacteria, fungi, yeasts, activated sludge, grape stalks, etc. Innovative processes have been studied in our Laboratory, particularly for metal ions removal, involving the initial abstraction of heavy metal ions onto a sorbent (including a biosorbent): in the first, the application of a flotation stage followed for the efficient downstream separation of metal-laden particles. The ability of microorganisms to remove metal ions from dilute aqueous solutions (as most wastewaters are) is a well-known property. The second separation process, also applied effectively, was a new hybrid cell of microfiltration combined with flotation. Sustainability in this field and its significance for the chemical and process industry is commented.
Keywords: solid/liquid separation; bubbles; microorganisms; float; foam solid/liquid separation; bubbles; microorganisms; float; foam
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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MDPI and ACS Style

Kyzas, G.Z.; Matis, K.A. Flotation of Biological Materials. Processes 2014, 2, 293-310.

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