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Ultrasound-Assisted Treatment of Landfill Leachate in a Sequencing Batch Reactor

Faculty of Infrastructure and Environment, Czestochowa University of Technology, 42-201 Czestochowa, Poland
Central Laboratory for Measurements and Research, 44-335 Jastrzebie-Zdroj, Poland
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Water 2019, 11(3), 516;
Received: 8 January 2019 / Revised: 5 March 2019 / Accepted: 7 March 2019 / Published: 12 March 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Insights on the Water–Energy–Food Nexus)
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Purification of leachates is currently a big challenge due to their high variability in composition and amount. The complexity of the medium, namely leachates, makes new solutions highly sought after and finds the existing ones in need of optimization. The effects of ultrasound pretreatment (20 kHz, 12 µm) on biological treatment of landfill leachates in the form of processes carried out in two sequencing batch reactors were investigated. The experiment was divided into two stages. In the first stage, leachate was treated by an ultrasonic field at different sonication times (0.5, 1, 3, 5, 10 and 15 min). Next, leachates with and without conditioning were combined with municipal wastewater in the following ratios: 5, 10, 15 and 25% v/v. For optimal processing time (3 min), 16% removal of COD was achieved. In turn, the BOD5/COD ratio was 0.3, which is higher by approximately 270% than that of the non-conditioned sample. Further elongation of sonication time did not significantly affect both parameters. Also, pretreatment of leachate resulted in a maximum increase noted in the study of specific oxygen uptake rate and dehydrogenase activity of approximately 21 and 2 times compared to the non-conditioned sample. The implementation of a pretreatment step prior to the biological treatment was shown to result in higher pollutant removal efficiency. Depending on the share of leachates in the mixture, the removal enhancements of BOD, COD, and ammonium nitrogen for conditioned samples ranged from 6–48.5%, 4–48% and 11–42%, respectively. Furthermore, pretreatment of leachate allows for an increased (by up to 20%) share of leachate volume in the influent stream entering the reactor, while maintaining the quality of effluents in accordance with national regulation requirements. However, in scenarios without pretreatment, the leachate ratio cannot exceed 5% of the total wastewater due to poor quality of the effluents. The operational cost of ultrasound pretreatment of leachate was 22.58 €/(m3·g removed COD). View Full-Text
Keywords: leachate; ultrasound; sequencing batch reactor; co-treatment; municipal wastewater; leachate pretreatment; mixing ratio leachate; ultrasound; sequencing batch reactor; co-treatment; municipal wastewater; leachate pretreatment; mixing ratio

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Grosser, A.; Neczaj, E.; Madela, M.; Celary, P. Ultrasound-Assisted Treatment of Landfill Leachate in a Sequencing Batch Reactor. Water 2019, 11, 516.

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