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Advances in elemental sulfur-driven bioprocesses for wastewater treatment: From metabolic study to application
Guo, Gang1; Li, Zhaoling1; Chen, Lei1; Ling, Qingshan1; Zan, Feixiang1; Isawi, Heba2; Hao, Tianwei3; Ma, Jie1; Wang, Zongping1; Chen, Guanghao4; Lu, Hui5
Source PublicationWater Research

Elemental sulfur (S) is known to be an abundant, non-toxic material with a wide range of redox states (-2 to +6) and may serve as an excellent electron carrier in wastewater treatment. In turn, S-driven bioprocesses, which employ S as electron donor or acceptor, have recently established themselves as cost-effective therefore attractive solutions for wastewater treatment. Numerous related processes have, to date, been developed from laboratory experiments into full-scale applications, including S-driven autotrophic denitrification for nitrate removal and S-reducing organic removal. Compared to the conventional activated sludge process, these bioprocesses require only a small amount of organic matter and produce very little sludge. There have been great efforts to characterize chemical and biogenic S and related functional microorganisms in order to identify the biochemical pathways, upgrade the bioprocesses, and assess the impact of the operating factors on process performance, ultimately aiming to better understand and to optimize the processes. This paper is therefore a comprehensive overview of emerging S-driven biotechnologies, including the development of S-driven autotrophic denitrification and S-based sulfidogenesis, as well as the associated microbiology and biochemistry. Also reviewed here are the physicochemical characteristics of S and the effects that environmental factors such as pH, influent sulfur/nitrate ratio, temperature, S particle size and reactor configurations have on the process. Research gaps, challenges of process applications and potential areas for future research are further proposed and discussed.

KeywordBiological Wastewater Treatment Elemental Sulfur Sulfur-driven Autotrophic Denitrification Sulfur-reducing Organics Removal
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Indexed BySCIE
WOS Research AreaEngineering ; Environmental Sciences & Ecology ; Water Resources
WOS SubjectEngineering, Environmental ; Environmental Sciences ; Water Resources
WOS IDWOS:000759173200002
Scopus ID2-s2.0-85124140894
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Cited Times [WOS]:6   [WOS Record]     [Related Records in WOS]
Document TypeJournal article
Corresponding AuthorHao, Tianwei; Lu, Hui
Affiliation1.School of Environmental Science and Engineering, Key Laboratory of Water and Wastewater Treatment (HUST), MOHURD, Huazhong University of Science and Technology (HUST), Wuhan, 430074, China
2.Desert Research Center, Water Resources and Desert Soils Division, Egyptian Desalination Research Center of Excellence (EDRC), Cairo, Egypt
3.Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Faculty of Science and Technology, University of Macau, Macau, China
4.Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Hong Kong, Hong Kong
5.School of Environmental Science and Engineering, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, China
Corresponding Author AffilicationFaculty of Science and Technology
Recommended Citation
GB/T 7714
Guo, Gang,Li, Zhaoling,Chen, Lei,et al. Advances in elemental sulfur-driven bioprocesses for wastewater treatment: From metabolic study to application[J]. Water Research,2022,213.
APA Guo, Gang,Li, Zhaoling,Chen, Lei,Ling, Qingshan,Zan, Feixiang,Isawi, Heba,Hao, Tianwei,Ma, Jie,Wang, Zongping,Chen, Guanghao,&Lu, Hui.(2022).Advances in elemental sulfur-driven bioprocesses for wastewater treatment: From metabolic study to application.Water Research,213.
MLA Guo, Gang,et al."Advances in elemental sulfur-driven bioprocesses for wastewater treatment: From metabolic study to application".Water Research 213(2022).
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