The effect of temperature shifts on N2O and NO emissions from a partial nitritation reactor treating reject wastewater

Bao, Zhiyuan
Spinelli, Matteo
Sun, Dezhi
Pijuan i Vilalta, Maite
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Temperature has a known effect on ammonia oxidizing bacteria (AOB) activities, reducing its ammonia oxidizing rate (AOR) when temperature is lowered. However, little is known concerning its effect on N2O and NO emissions which are produced during ammonia oxidation having a greenhouse effect. To study this, an AOB enriched partial nitrification sequencing batch reactor (PN-SBR) was operated within a two step-wise feed under 5 different temperatures (30-25-20-15-10 °C). A decrease on the specific AOR (sAOR) was detected when decreasing the temperature. N2O emissions were also affected by the temperature but only the ones produced during the first aeration of the cycle, when AOBs shifted from a period of low activity to a period of high activity. N2O emission factors (%) detected during the second aerobic phase were similar among all temperatures tested and lower than the emissions detected during the first aerated phase. The average N2O emission factor was in the range of 0.15–0.70% N2O-N/NH4+-N oxidized in the first aeration phase and 0.14–0.15% N2O-N/NH4+-N-oxidized in the second aeration phase at 10 to 30 °C, respectively. On the other hand, NO emissions were very similar under all temperatures resulting in 0.03–0.06% of NH4+-N oxidized ​
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