Odorous compounds treatment of winery and distillery effluents during natural evaporation in ponds

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Courtesy of IWA Publishing

ABSTRACT
During treatment of winery and distillery wastewater by natural evaporation in ponds, formation of malodorous compounds induces harmful olfactory effects. In this work, we studied the origin of malodorous compounds and methods to prevent and treat odours. The formation of volatile fatty acids (VFA) from pure substrates (glycerol, lactic and tartaric acids, ethanol) and complex media (winery and distillery wastewater) was studied. Various anaerobic bacteria ferment the glycerol and produce butyric or propionic acid. Valeric and caproic acids were observed at lower concentrations than butyric and propionic acids, but their malodorous intensities were higher. Microflora produce butyric, valeric, caproic, heptanoic and octanoic acids from ethanol, the main component of winery wastewater. When nitrate (an electron acceptor) is added, catabolism leads to an anaerobic respiration phenomenon (denitrification). The organic compounds are oxidised to CO2 and the nitrate is reduced to N2 (odourless compounds), without VFA formation. The preventive treatment of odours by nitrate addition was tested on an industrial scale in winery and distillery ponds. Furthermore, the study took the effect of nitrate on VFA degradation into consideration. The results make it possible to consider using nitrate for the curative treatment of pond odours.

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