Nitrogen removal from wastewater with anammox for low resource usage and small carbon footprint

With anaerobic ammonium oxidation (anammox), efficient nitrogen removal from wastewater with low energy usage and small carbon footprint can be achieved. Anammox bacteria remove nitrogen without consuming organic carbon, in contrast to denitrifying bacteria used in conventional treatment. Hence, more biogas can be produced from the organic carbon using anammox at wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs). Together with decreased needs for aeration this reduces the total energy usage and the carbon footprint considerably. Also decreased greenhouse emissions and lower economic costs are expected. Today, anammox is used for treatment of concentrated warm side streams, but not the main stream of wastewater, which represents 80-85% of all nitrogen at WWTPs. The challenge is to achieve high process rates and suppress unwanted microbial activities in the colder and more dilute main stream. In this project, the effects of environmental factors typical for main stream wastewater are investigated with respect to the process performance and the activity, diversity and composition of the microbial communities in order to develop operational strategies.

Partner organizations

  • University of Gothenburg (Academic, Sweden)
  • University of Gothenburg (Publisher, Sweden)
Start date 01/01/2015
End date The project is closed: 31/12/2017

With anaerobic ammonium oxidation (anammox), efficient nitrogen removal from wastewater with low energy usage and small carbon footprint can be achieved. Anammox bacteria remove nitrogen without consuming organic carbon, in contrast to denitrifying bacteria used in conventional treatment. Hence, more biogas can be produced from the organic carbon using anammox at wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs). Together with decreased needs for aeration this reduces the total energy usage and the carbon footprint considerably. Also decreased greenhouse emissions and lower economic costs are expected. Today, anammox is used for treatment of concentrated warm side streams, but not the main stream of wastewater, which represents 80-85% of all nitrogen at WWTPs. The challenge is to achieve high process rates and suppress unwanted microbial activities in the colder and more dilute main stream. In this project, the effects of environmental factors typical for main stream wastewater are investigated with respect to the process performance and the activity, diversity and composition of the microbial communities in order to develop operational strategies.

External partners at the project
VA-Syd (David Gustavsson); KMB, Mikrobiologi, Göteborgs Universitet (Malte Hermansson, Carolina Suarez) / VA-Syd (David Gustavsson); CMB, Microbiology, University of Gothenburg (Malte Hermansson, Carolina Suarez)
Related projects

Bioresource Labs (BRL); Use of anammox for a more efficient nitrogen removal in wastewater treatment plants

Division
Water Environment Technology

Funded by

  • Formas (Public, Sweden)
Built Environment, Energy

Published: Thu 31 May 2018.