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Open AccessArticle

Agroindustrial Wastewater Treatment with Simultaneous Biodiesel Production in Attached Growth Systems Using a Mixed Microbial Culture

Department of Environmental and Natural Resources Management, University of Patras, G. Seferi 2, 30100 Agrinio, Greece
Department of Civil Engineering, Democritus University of Thrace, Vasilissis Sofias 12, 67100 Xanthi, Greece
Department of Biology, University of Patras, 26500 Patras, Greece
School of Biology, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, 54124 Thessaloniki, Greece
Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Patras, 26500 Patras, Greece
Institute of Chemical Engineering and High Temperature Chemical Processes (FORTH/ICE-HT), Stadiou Str., Platani, 26504 Patras, Greece
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Water 2018, 10(11), 1693;
Received: 19 October 2018 / Revised: 14 November 2018 / Accepted: 15 November 2018 / Published: 20 November 2018
The use of cyanobacteria in biological wastewater treatment technologies can greatly reduce operation costs by combining wastewater bioremediation and production of lipid suitable as biodiesel feedstock. In this work, an attached growth system was employed to achieve the above-mentioned dual objective using a mixed microbial culture dominated by Leptolyngbya and Limnothrix species in diverse heterotrophic consortia. Kinetic experiments on different initial pollutant concentrations were carried out to determine the ability of the established culture to remove organic load (expressed by d-COD, dissolved-Chemical Oxygen Demand), N and P from agroindustrial wastewaters (dairy, winery and raisin). Biomass and oil productivity were determined. It was found that significant removal rates of nutrients were achieved in all the wastewaters examined, especially in that originated from winery in which the highest d-COD removal rate (up to 97.4%) was observed. The attached microbial biomass produced in winery wastewater contained 23.2% lipid/biomass, wt/wt, which was satisfying. The growth in the dairy wastewater yielded the highest attached biomass productivity (5.03 g m−2 day−1) followed by the mixed effluent of winery-raisin (4.12 g m−2 day−1) and the winery wastewater (3.08 g m−2 day−1). The produced microbial lipids contained high percentages of saturated and mono-unsaturated fatty acids (over 89% in total lipids) in all substrates examined. We conclude that the proposed attached growth photobioreactor system can be considered an effective wastewater treatment system that simultaneously produces microbial lipids suitable as biodiesel feedstock. View Full-Text
Keywords: Leptolyngbya; Limnothrix; wastewater treatment; biodiesel; attached systems Leptolyngbya; Limnothrix; wastewater treatment; biodiesel; attached systems
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Tsolcha, O.N.; Tekerlekopoulou, A.G.; Akratos, C.S.; Aggelis, G.; Genitsaris, S.; Moustaka-Gouni, M.; Vayenas, D.V. Agroindustrial Wastewater Treatment with Simultaneous Biodiesel Production in Attached Growth Systems Using a Mixed Microbial Culture. Water 2018, 10, 1693.

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