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Pin-point denitrification for groundwater purification without direct chemical dosing: Demonstration of a two-chamber sulfide-driven denitrifying microbial electrochemical system
Sen Lin1; Tianwei Hao3; Xiling Li1; Yihang Xiao3; Guanghao Chen1,2
2020-09-01
Source PublicationWATER RESEARCH
ISSN0043-1354
Volume182
Abstract

The nitrate concentration in groundwater has been increasing over time due to the intensive use of nitrogen fertilizer. Current nitrate removal technologies are restricted by the high operational cost or the inevitable secondary contaminations. This study proposed a two-chamber sulfide-driven denitrifying microbial electrochemical system to denitrify nitrate in its cathode chamber. Instead of conventional organic substrates, sulfide is oxidized in the anode chamber to generate electrons for cathodic denitrification. Long-term performance of this novel system was evaluated over 200 days (100 cycles) of batch-fed operation. With the assistance of anodic microorganisms, sulfide can be directly oxidized to sulfate thus avoiding passivating the anode. Catalyzed by the cathodic microorganisms, complete denitrification was realized with neither nitrite nor nitrous oxide accumulation. Benefiting from the electroautotrophic behavior of the functional microorganisms, high electron utilization efficiencies were achieved, 80% and 85% for the anode (sulfide oxidation) and the cathode (denitrification) respectively. Both observed electrode potentials and microbial analyses revealed that cytochrome c is the crucial electron transfer mediator in the cathodic electron transfer for denitrification. Based on the analysis of planktonic and biofilm microbial samples, anodic and cathodic extracellular electron transfer bioprocesses are proposed, both the direct and mediated electron transfers involved, as were revealed by immobilized and planktonic functional microorganisms, respectively. This study demonstrates the feasibility of purifying nitrate-contaminated groundwater without sacrificing its water quality in a separate mode of treatment. This concept can be extended to a broader field, in which the water requires bio-polishing without introducing unwanted secondary pollution like the post-denitrification of wastewater effluents.

KeywordAutotrophic Denitrification Groundwater Microbial Electrochemical Technology Sulfide Oxidation
DOI10.1016/j.watres.2020.115918
URLView the original
Indexed BySCIE
Language英語English
WOS Research AreaEngineering ; Environmental Sciences & Ecology ; Water Resources
WOS SubjectEngineering, Environmental ; Environmental Sciences ; Water Resources
WOS IDWOS:000569155800016
Scopus ID2-s2.0-85086116606
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Citation statistics
Document TypeJournal article
CollectionDEPARTMENT OF CIVIL AND ENVIRONMENTAL ENGINEERING
Corresponding AuthorTianwei Hao
Affiliation1.Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, The Hong Kong University of Science & Technology, Clear Water Bay, Kowloon, Hong Kong
2.Chinese National Engineering Research Center for Control & Treatment of Heavy Metal Pollution (Hong Kong Branch) and Water Technology Center, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Clear Water Bay, Hong Kong
3.Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Faculty of Science and Technology, University of Macau, Macao
Corresponding Author AffilicationFaculty of Science and Technology
Recommended Citation
GB/T 7714
Sen Lin,Tianwei Hao,Xiling Li,et al. Pin-point denitrification for groundwater purification without direct chemical dosing: Demonstration of a two-chamber sulfide-driven denitrifying microbial electrochemical system[J]. WATER RESEARCH,2020,182.
APA Sen Lin,Tianwei Hao,Xiling Li,Yihang Xiao,&Guanghao Chen.(2020).Pin-point denitrification for groundwater purification without direct chemical dosing: Demonstration of a two-chamber sulfide-driven denitrifying microbial electrochemical system.WATER RESEARCH,182.
MLA Sen Lin,et al."Pin-point denitrification for groundwater purification without direct chemical dosing: Demonstration of a two-chamber sulfide-driven denitrifying microbial electrochemical system".WATER RESEARCH 182(2020).
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