Assessment of a Fixed Media Partial Denitrification/Anammox Process Startup in a Full-Scale Treatment Train

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Virginia Tech


Partial denitrification anammox (PdNA) is an emerging wastewater treatment technology with the potential to increase process capacity and save on energy and carbon. PdNA circumvents potential issues with stability of the more familiar mainstream partial nitritation anammox (PNA) process. The PdNA process can be used to effectively remove ammonia, nitrate, and nitrite from mainstream municipal waste streams. To retain slow growing anammox, some sort of retention system is needed with media being a common solution to this problem. PdNA has been successfully implemented in mainstream full-scale systems in sand filters and with moving media. The goal of this study was to assess the denitrifying capabilities, anammox treatment capacity, and effective surface area to volume of two types of fixed media. A nitrifying pilot was set up to assess the effective surface area to volume. To assess the nitrifying and anammox ammonia removal capabilities of the fixed media, a fixed media PdNA system was installed in the second anoxic zone of a full-scale municipal wastewater treatment plant. The fixed media system consisted of three modules of sheets modified to mimic a plug flow system. After accounting for the estimated nitrate removal from mixed liquor, denitrification rates normalized to media surface area were 0.52 +/- 1.9 g/m2-day in the first module, 0.62 +/- 0.91 g/m2-day for the second module, and 0.56 +/- 0.90 g/m2-day for the third module. In ex situ batch testing it was found that maximum ex-situ anammox ammonia removal rates for the



Anammox, Partial Denitrification, Fixed Media, IFAS, Mainstream