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Journal of Chemistry
Volume 2017 (2017), Article ID 4080847, 7 pages
Research Article

Study of Carbonaceous and Nitrogenous Pollutant Removal Efficiencies in a Hybrid Membrane Bioreactor

Aix-Marseille University, CNRS, Centrale Marseille, M2P2 UMR 7340, 13541 Marseille Cedex 13, France

Correspondence should be addressed to Nicolas Roche

Received 8 March 2017; Revised 25 April 2017; Accepted 11 May 2017; Published 8 June 2017

Academic Editor: Carlos Alberto Lberto Martínez-Huitle

Copyright © 2017 Victor S. Ruys et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


A hybrid membrane bioreactor (HMBR) comprises activated sludge (free biomass), a biofilm (supported biomass), and a membrane separation. A laboratory pilot-scale HMBR was operated for seven months with high organic loads of both carbonic and nitrogen pollutants. Several experiments were conducted to investigate the influence of the height of the packing bed (27 cm, 50 cm, and 0 cm) and the effect of the concentration of dissolved oxygen (DO) on the organic removal rate, total nitrogen removal rate (TN), and ammonium removal. The organic removal rate was always >95% and mostly >98%. The -N and TN removal rates were directly related to DO. -N removal rate reached 100% and was mostly >99% with a concentration of DO > 0.1 mg/L, whereas the -N removal rate was differentially affected depending on the level of DO. The removal rate increased when the concentration of DO was optimal for simultaneous nitrification and denitrification, which was between 0.1 and 0.5 mg/l, and the TN removal rate was consequently high. The removal rate decreased when DO was high and denitrification was consequently low thereby reducing the TN removal rate. This implies that high levels of DO (>1 mg/L) limit the denitrification process and low levels of DO (<0.1 mg/L) limit the nitrification process and hence total nitrogen removal in the bioreactor.