Zinc deprivation of methanol fed anaerobic granular sludge bioreactors.
ABSTRACT: The effect of omitting zinc from the influent of mesophilic (30 degrees C) methanol fed upflow anaerobic sludge bed (UASB) reactors, and latter zinc supplementation to the influent to counteract the deprivation, was investigated by coupling the UASB reactor performance to the microbial ecology of the bioreactor sludge. Limitation of the specific methanogenic activity (SMA) on methanol due to the absence of zinc from the influent developed after 137 days of operation. At that day, the SMA in medium with a complete trace metal solution except Zn was 3.4 g CH4-COD g VSS(-1) day(-1), compared to 4.2 g CH4-COD g VSS(-1) day(-1) in a medium with a complete (including zinc) trace metal solution. The methanol removal capacity during these 137 days was 99% and no volatile fatty acids accumulated. Two UASB reactors, inoculated with the zinc-deprived sludge, were operated to study restoration of the zinc limitation by zinc supplementation to the bioreactor influent. In a first reactor, no changes to the operational conditions were made. This resulted in methanol accumulation in the reactor effluent after 12 days of operation, which subsequently induced acetogenic activity 5 days after the methanol accumulation started. Methanogenesis could not be recovered by the continuous addition of 0.5 microM ZnCl2 to the reactor for 13 days. In the second reactor, 0.5 microM ZnCl2 was added from its start-up. Although the reactor stayed 10 days longer methanogenically than the reactor operated without zinc, methanol accumulation was observed in this reactor (up to 1.1 g COD-MeOH L(-1)) as well. This study shows that zinc limitation can induce failure of methanol fed UASB reactors due to acidification, which cannot be restored by resuming the continuous supply of the deprived metal.
Project description:The effect of nickel deprivation from the influent of a mesophilic (30 degrees C) methanol fed upflow anaerobic sludge bed (UASB) reactor was investigated by coupling the reactor performance to the evolution of the Methanosarcina population of the bioreactor sludge. The reactor was operated at pH 7.0 and an organic loading rate (OLR) of 5-15 g COD l(-1) day(-1) for 191 days. A clear limitation of the specific methanogenic activity (SMA) on methanol due to the absence of nickel was observed after 129 days of bioreactor operation: the SMA of the sludge in medium with the complete trace metal solution except nickel amounted to 1.164 (+/-0.167) g CH(4)-COD g VSS(-1) day(-1) compared to 2.027 (+/-0.111) g CH(4)-COD g VSS(-1) day(-1) in a medium with the complete (including nickel) trace metal solution. The methanol removal efficiency during these 129 days was 99%, no volatile fatty acid (VFA) accumulation was observed and the size of the Methanosarcina population increased compared to the seed sludge. Continuation of the UASB reactor operation with the nickel limited sludge lead to incomplete methanol removal, and thus methanol accumulation in the reactor effluent from day 142 onwards. This methanol accumulation subsequently induced an increase of the acetogenic activity in the UASB reactor on day 160. On day 165, 77% of the methanol fed to the system was converted to acetate and the Methanosarcina population size had substantially decreased. Inclusion of 0.5 muM Ni (dosed as NiCl(2)) to the influent from day 165 onwards lead to the recovery of the methanol removal efficiency to 99% without VFA accumulation within 2 days of bioreactor operation.
Project description:In upflow anaerobic sludge bed (UASB) reactors, biomass present as granules allows for long solids retention time. Here, granules from a process treating pulp and paper industrial wastewater were successfully applied as inoculum in UASB reactors treating pig manure supernatant, despite high particle content and high ammonium concentrations in the influent. We did a detailed characterization of archaeal and bacterial communities associated with the inoculum and with the aggregated and dispersed fractions of the influent and the reactors after one year of operation. The granular communities underwent major changes and adapted to the highly distinct conditions without disintegration of the granules. Although the granules persisted in the reactors, non-granular aggregates accumulated, and partly replaced the granules. Particles introduced to the reactors by the pig manure influent apparently contributed both as food and biofilm growth support. Archaeal communities in the dispersed reactor phase were similar to those dispersed in the influents, implying successful retention and little loss of archaeal biomass due to detachment or disintegration of granules and other aggregates. Unique bacterial communities developed in the dispersed fraction of the reactors despite of low hydraulic retention times. They probably consisted of fast growing organisms consuming readily degradable organic matter.
Project description:Eukaryotes are important components of ecosystems in wastewater treatment processes. However, little is known about eukaryotic community in anaerobic wastewater treatment systems. In this study, eukaryotic communities in an up flow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) reactor treating domestic sewage during two years of operation were investigated using V4 and V9 regions of 18S rRNA gene for amplicon sequencing. In addition, activated sludge and influent sewage samples were also analyzed and used as the references for aerobic eukaryotic community to characterize anaerobic eukaryotes. The amplicon sequence V4 and V9 libraries detected different taxonomic groups, especially from the UASB samples, suggesting that commonly used V4 and V9 primer pairs could produce a bias for eukaryotic communities analysis. Eukaryotic community structures in the UASB reactor were influenced by the immigration of eukaryotes via influent sewage but were clearly different from the influent sewage and activated sludge. Multivariate statistics indicated that protist genera Cyclidium, Platyophrya and Subulatomonas correlated with chemical oxygen demand and suspended solid concentration, and could be used as bioindicators of treatment performance. Uncultured eukaryotes groups were dominant in the UASB reactor, and their physiological roles need to be examined to understand their contributions to anaerobic processes in future studies.
Project description:We studied the peptide-degrading anaerobic communities of methanogenic reactors from two mesophilic full-scale modified upflow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) reactors treating brewery wastewater in Colombia. Most probable number (MPN) counts varied between 7.1 x 10(8) and 6.6 × 10(9) bacteria/g volatile suspended solids VSS (Methanogenic Reactor 1) and 7.2 × 10(6) and 6.4 × 10(7) bacteria/g (VSS) (Methanogenic Reactor 2). Metabolites detected in the highest positive MPN dilutions in both reactors were mostly acetate, propionate, isovalerate and, in some cases, negligible concentrations of butyrate. Using the highest positive dilutions of MPN counts, 50 dominant strains were isolated from both reactors, and 12 strains were selected for sequencing their 16S rRNA gene based on their phenotypic characteristics. The small-subunit rRNA gene sequences indicated that these strains were affiliated to the families Propionibacteriaceae, Clostridiaceae and Syntrophomonadaceae in the low G + C gram-positive group and Desulfovibrio spp. in the class ?-Proteobacteria. The main metabolites detected in the highest positive dilutions of MPN and the presence of Syntrophomonadaceae indicate the effect of the syntrophic associations on the bioconversion of these substrates in methanogenic reactors. Additionally, the potential utilization of external electron acceptors for the complete degradation of amino acids by Clostridium strains confirms the relevance of these acceptors in the transformation of peptides and amino acids in these systems.
Project description:Upflow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) reactor has served as an effective process to treat industrial wastewater such as purified terephthalic acid (PTA) wastewater. For optimal UASB performance, balanced ecological interactions between syntrophs, methanogens, and fermenters are critical. However, much of the interactions remain unclear because UASB have been studied at a "macro"-level perspective of the reactor ecosystem. In reality, such reactors are composed of a suite of granules, each forming individual micro-ecosystems treating wastewater. Thus, typical approaches may be oversimplifying the complexity of the microbial ecology and granular development. To identify critical microbial interactions at both macro- and micro- level ecosystem ecology, we perform community and network analyses on 300 PTA-degrading granules from a lab-scale UASB reactor and two full-scale reactors. Based on MiSeq-based 16S rRNA gene sequencing of individual granules, different granule-types co-exist in both full-scale reactors regardless of granule size and reactor sampling depth, suggesting that distinct microbial interactions occur in different granules throughout the reactor. In addition, we identify novel networks of syntrophic metabolic interactions in different granules, perhaps caused by distinct thermodynamic conditions. Moreover, unseen methanogenic relationships (e.g. "Candidatus Aminicenantes" and Methanosaeta) are observed in UASB reactors. In total, we discover unexpected microbial interactions in granular micro-ecosystems supporting UASB ecology and treatment through a unique single-granule level approach.
Project description:The development and activity of a cold-adapting microbial community was monitored during low-temperature anaerobic digestion (LtAD) treatment of wastewater. Two replicate hybrid anaerobic sludge bed-fixed-film reactors treated a synthetic sewage wastewater at 12°C, at organic loading rates of 0.25-1.0 kg chemical oxygen demand (COD) m-3 d-1, over 889 days. The inoculum was obtained from a full-scale anaerobic digestion reactor, which was operated at 37°C. Both LtAD reactors readily degraded the influent with COD removal efficiencies regularly exceeding 78% for both the total and soluble COD fractions. The biomass from both reactors was sampled temporally and tested for activity against hydrolytic and methanogenic substrates at 12°C and 37°C. Data indicated that significantly enhanced low-temperature hydrolytic and methanogenic activity developed in both systems. For example, the hydrolysis rate constant (k) at 12°C had increased 20-30-fold by comparison to the inoculum by day 500. Substrate affinity also increased for hydrolytic substrates at low temperature. Next generation sequencing demonstrated that a shift in a community structure occurred over the trial, involving a 1-log-fold change in 25 SEQS (OTU-free approach) from the inoculum. Microbial community structure changes and process performance were replicable in the LtAD reactors.
Project description:Tetramethylammonium-degrading methanogenic consortia from a complete-mixing suspended sludge (CMSS) and an upflow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) reactors were studied using multiple PCR-based molecular techniques and shotgun proteomic approach. The prokaryotic 16S rRNA genes of the consortia were analyzed by quantitative PCR, high-throughput sequencing, and DGGE-cloning methods. The results showed that methanogenic archaea were highly predominant in both reactors but differed markedly according to community structure. Community and proteomic analysis revealed that Methanomethylovorans and Methanosarcina were the major players for the demethylation of methylated substrates and methane formation through the reduction pathway of methyl-S-CoM and possibly, acetyl-CoA synthase/decarbonylase-related pathways. Unlike high dominance of one Methanomethylovorans population in the CMSS reactor, diverse methylotrophic Methanosarcina species inhabited in syntrophy-like association with hydrogenotrophic Methanobacterium in the granular sludge of UASB reactor. The overall findings indicated the reactor-dependent community structures of quaternary amines degradation and provided microbial insight for the improved understanding of engineering application.
Project description:The present work aimed to investigate the microbial dynamics during the anaerobic treatment of the azo dye blue HRFL in bench scale upflow anaerobic sludge bed (UASB) reactor operated at ambient temperature. Sludge samples were collected under distinct operational phases, when the reactor were stable (low variation of color removal), to assess the effect of glucose and yeast extract as source of carbon and redox mediators, respectively. Reactors performance was evaluated based on COD (chemical oxygen demand) and color removal. The microbial dynamics were investigated by PCR-DGGE (Polimerase Chain Reaction - Denaturing Gradient of Gel Electrophoresis) technique by comparing the 16S rDNA profiles among samples. The results suggest that the composition of microorganisms changed from the beginning to the end of the reactor operation, probably in response to the presence of azo dye and/or its degradation byproducts. Despite the highest efficiency of color removal was observed in the presence of 500 mg/L of yeast extract (up to 93%), there were no differences regarding the microbial profiles that could indicate a microbial selection by the yeast extract addition. On the other hand Methosarcina barkeri was detected only in the end of operation when the best efficiencies on color removal occurred. Nevertheless the biomass selection observed in the last stages of UASB operation is probably a result of the washout of the sludge in response of accumulation of aromatic amines which led to tolerant and very active biomass that contributed to high efficiencies on color removal.
Project description:We herein analyzed the diversity of microbes involved in anaerobic sulfur oxidation in an upflow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) reactor used for treating municipal sewage under low-temperature conditions. Anaerobic sulfur oxidation occurred in the absence of oxygen, with nitrite and nitrate as electron acceptors; however, reactor performance parameters demonstrated that anaerobic conditions were maintained. In order to gain insights into the underlying basis of anaerobic sulfur oxidation, the microbial diversity that exists in the UASB sludge was analyzed comprehensively to determine their identities and contribution to sulfur oxidation. Sludge samples were collected from the UASB reactor over a period of 2 years and used for bacterial 16S rRNA gene-based terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (T-RFLP) and next-generation sequencing analyses. T-RFLP and sequencing results both showed that microbial community patterns changed markedly from day 537 onwards. Bacteria belonging to the genus Desulforhabdus within the phylum Proteobacteria and uncultured bacteria within the phylum Fusobacteria were the main groups observed during the period of anaerobic sulfur oxidation. Their abundance correlated with temperature, suggesting that these bacterial groups played roles in anaerobic sulfur oxidation in UASB reactors.
Project description:The effects of two powdered mineral materials (powdered ceramsite and powdered limestone) on aerobic granulation of sludge were evaluated. The experiment was conducted on a laboratory scale bioreactors treating wastewater for 89 days. Three granular sequencing batch reactors (GSBRs) were operated at the lowest optimal organic loading rate (OLR) of 2.55 g COD/(L?d). In the control reactor (R1), the mean diameter (d) of the biomass ranged from 124.0 to 210.0 µm, and complete granulation was not achieved. However, complete granulation did occur in reactors to which either ceramsite (251.9 µm < d < 783.1 µm) or limestone (246.0 µm < d < 518.9 µm) was added. Both powdered materials served as a ballast for the sludge flocs making up the seed sludge. Ceramsite particles also acted as microcarriers of granule-forming biomass. The granules in the reactors with added powdered materials had nonfibrous and smoother surfaces. The reactor with ceramsite exhibited the highest average efficiencies for COD, total nitrogen, and total phosphorus removal (85.4 ± 5.4%, 56.6 ± 10.2%, and 56.8 ± 9.9%, respectively). By contrast, the average nitrification efficiency was 95.1 ± 12.8%.