Keywords: biosorption, toxic metals, harvesting, biomass, separation, biosorptive flotation, wastewater treatment, pollution control, environmental pollution, microbial technology
The process of flotation: an efficient solid/liquid separation technique for biological materials
The studied innovative wastewater treatment process involved the initial abstraction of heavy metal ions onto fungal or stalks biomass (biosorption), followed by the application of a typical flotation stage for the efficient downstream separation of metal-laden biosorbent particles. The ability of microorganisms to remove metal ions from dilute aqueous solutions is a well-known property. Flotation originated from the minerals' processing field; however, it has nowadays found application in the wastewater treatment field. The two processes of biosorption and flotation can be efficiently combined, forming the so-called 'biosorptive flotation' process.