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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2016

Microalgal growth in municipal wastewater treated in an anaerobic moving bed biofilm reactor

Hultberg, Malin; Olsson, Lars-Erik; Birgersson, Göran; Gustafsson, Susanne; Sievertsson, Bertil


Nutrient removal from the effluent of an anaerobic moving bed biofilm reactor (AnMBBR) treated with microalgae was evaluated. Algal treatment was highly efficient in removal of nutrients and discharge limits were met after 3 days. Extending the cultivation time from 3 to 5 days resulted in a large increase in biomass, from 233.3 +/- 49.3 to 530.0 +/- 72.1 mg L-1, despite nutrients in the water being exhausted after 3 days (ammonium 0.04 mg L-1, orthophosphate <0.05 mg L-1). Biomass productivity, lipid content and quality did not differ in microalgal biomass produced in wastewater sampled before the AnMBBR. The longer cultivation time resulted in a slight increase in total lipid concentration and a significant decrease in linolenic acid concentration in all treatments. Differences were observed in chemical oxygen demand, which decreased after algal treatment in wastewater sampled before the AnMBBR whereas it increased after algal treatment in the effluent from the AnMBBR. (C) 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


AnMBBR; Chlorella spp.; Fatty acids; Nutrient removal; Scenedesmus spp.

Published in

Bioresource Technology
2016, Volume: 207, pages: 19-23

    SLU Authors

    • Sustainable Development Goals

      SDG6 Clean water and sanitation
      SDG11 Sustainable cities and communities

      UKÄ Subject classification

      Other Environmental Engineering

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