High strength domestic wastewater treatment with submerged forward osmosis membrane bioreactor

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Forward osmosis membranes are less prone to fouling with high rejection of salts, and the osmotic membrane bioreactor (OMBR) can be considered as an innovative membrane technology for wastewater treatment. In this study, a submerged OMBR having a cellulose triacetate membrane, with the active layer facing the feed solution configuration, was operated at different organic loading rates (OLRs), i.e., 0.4, 1.2 and 2.0 kg-COD/(m3·d) with chemical oxygen demand (COD) concentrations of 200 mg/L, 600 mg/L and 1,000 mg/L, respectively, to evaluate the performance on varying wastewater strengths. High organic content with sufficient amount of nutrients enhanced the biomass growth. High OLR caused more extrapolymeric substances production and less dewaterability. However, no significant differences in fouling trends and flux rates were observed among different OLR operational conditions.

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