Immobilised microbial reactor for heavy metal pollution control
The copper removal potential of Pseudomonas aeruginosa immobilised on different adsorbent resins has been studied. Duolite S-761 was found to be the most suitable matrix for bacterial immobilisation. Column studies were conducted using virgin as well as bacteria-immobilised resin. The experimental results reveal that resin with immobilised cells as sorbent increased the column capacity by more than 100%. Sorbed copper (II) could be desorbed using citrate buffer, and the bacteria immobilised reactor could be reused for removal of copper(II) with more than 90% efficiency. Further, the immobilised microbes were found to be viable. Hydrochloric acid (0.1 N) was able to desorb almost 100% of the sorbed metal, but the viability of the cells was affected, as expected.
Keywords: desorption, heavy metals, bacterial immobilisation, microbial reactors, microbial viability, copper removal, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, environmental pollution