Characterization of the size-fractionated biomacromolecules: tracking their role and fate in a membrane bioreactor

Meng, Fangang, Zhou, Zhongbo, Ni, Bing-Jie, Zheng, Xing, Huang, Guocheng, Jia, Xiaoshan, Li, Shiyu, Xiong, Ya and Kraume, Matthias (2011) Characterization of the size-fractionated biomacromolecules: tracking their role and fate in a membrane bioreactor. Water Research, 45 15: 4661-4671. doi:10.1016/j.watres.2011.06.026


Author Meng, Fangang
Zhou, Zhongbo
Ni, Bing-Jie
Zheng, Xing
Huang, Guocheng
Jia, Xiaoshan
Li, Shiyu
Xiong, Ya
Kraume, Matthias
Title Characterization of the size-fractionated biomacromolecules: tracking their role and fate in a membrane bioreactor
Journal name Water Research   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0043-1354
1879-2448
Publication date 2011-10
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/j.watres.2011.06.026
Volume 45
Issue 15
Start page 4661
End page 4671
Total pages 11
Place of publication London, United Kingdom
Publisher IWA Publishing
Language eng
Formatted abstract
This article presents a study aimed at the fractionation and characterization of what is thought to be one of the most complex organic mixtures produced by activated sludge: biomacromolecules (BMM). Photometric quantification combined with excitation–emission matrix (EEM) fluorescence spectroscopy and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) measurements were used to characterize BMM in a membrane bioreactor (MBR) from a chemical perspective. Overall, the BMM in sludge supernatant were mainly present in three fractions: colloidal BMM (BMMc, >0.45 μm), biopolymeric BMM (BMMb, 0.45 μm–100 kDa) and low molecular weight (MW) fraction (<5 kDa). The analysis of fluorescence regional integration (FRI) showed that the organics in membrane permeate and those in the low-MW fraction of sludge supernatant were of similar chemical composition. The characterization by NMR suggested that the BMMc fraction had similar carbon content of proteins and polysaccharides. In contrast, the BMMb and the low-MW BMM were proved to be carbonaceous and aromatics, respectively. Moreover, because of the high MW and gelling property, polysaccharides were found to have a high potential to accumulate on the membranes. In addition, the lipids present in the BMMb of the sludge supernatant were demonstrated to be another important foulant due to their large size. Our results also indicated that aromatic proteins had a higher fouling propensity than tryptophan proteins though they were of similar size nature. This work could be useful for better understanding of the chemical nature of BMMs in MBRs.
Keyword Membrane bioreactors (MBRs)
Membrane fouling
Biopolymers
Soluble microbial products (SMP)
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Non-UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: Advanced Water Management Centre Publications
 
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