Sludge water (SW) arising from the dewatering of anaerobic digested sludge causes high back loads of ammonium, leading to high stress (inhibition of the activity of microorganisms by an oversupply of nitrogen compounds (substrate inhibition)) for wastewater treatment plants (WWTP). On the other hand, ammonium is a valuable resource to substitute ammonia from the energy intensive Haber-Bosch process for fertilizer production. Within this work, it was investigated to what extent and under which conditions Carpathian clinoptilolite powder (CCP 20) can be used to remove ammonium from SW and to recover it. Two different SW, originating from municipal WWTPs were investigated (SW1: c0
= 967 mg/L NH4
-N, municipal wastewater; SW2: c0
= 718–927 mg/L NH4
-N, large industrial wastewater share). The highest loading was achieved at 307 K with 16.1 mg/g (SW1) and 15.3 mg/g (SW2) at 295 K. Kinetic studies with different specific dosages (0.05 gCLI
), temperatures (283–307 K) and pre-loaded CCP 20 (0–11.4 mg/g) were conducted. At a higher temperature a higher load was achieved. Already after 30 min contact time, regardless of the sludge water, a high load up to 7.15 mg/g at 307 K was reached, achieving equilibrium after 120 min. Pre-loaded sorbent could be further loaded with ammonium when it was recontacted with the SW.
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