JOURNAL ARTICLE

Pilot-plant results of the electro-Fenton treatment of olive mill wastewaters followed by anaerobic digestion

S Khoufi, F Feki, F Aloui, S Sayadi
Water Science and Technology: a Journal of the International Association on Water Pollution Research 2007, 55 (12): 67-73
17674829
In this work, we investigated an integrated technology for the treatment of the recalcitrant contaminants of olive mill wastewaters (OMW), allowing water recovery and reuse for agricultural purposes. The method involves an electrochemical pre-treatment step of the wastewater using the electro-Fenton reaction followed by an anaerobic bio-treatment. The electro-Fenton pre-treatment process removed 66% of the total polyphenolic compounds and subsequently decreased the OMW toxicity from 100 to 66.9%, which resulted in improving the performance of the anaerobic digestion. A continuous laboratory-scale methanogenic reactor was operated at a loading rate of 10g COD/L per day without any apparent toxicity. Furthermore, in the combined process, a high overall reduction in COD, suspended solids, polyphenols and lipids content was achieved by the two successive stages. Moreover, this combined process which was experimented at a real scale (25 m3 digester) demonstrated its technical feasibility and opens promising perspectives for industrial application in the Mediterranean countries because of its easy conception and high energy (methane) production.

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