The continuous dredging of sediments contaminated by polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons such as phenanthrene (PHE) has required the employment of high–efficiency technologies, including sediment washing (SW). However, the large amount of generated spent SW effluents requires the development of effective, eco–friendly and cost–saving approaches, which can tackle the waste formation in favor of the recovery of chemicals. This study proposes the treatment of a spent SW solution containing ethanol (EtOH) as extracting agent, by testing different initial PHE concentrations (i.e. 20–140 mg L−1) within six consecutive cycles in a fed–batch bioreactor under aerobic conditions. The biological process achieved a PHE removal of 63–91% after the enrichment of PHE–degrading bacteria and the proper supplementation of nutrients, and was mainly affected by the initial PHE concentration value and the excessive decrease of pH and dissolved oxygen. Achromobacter, Sphingobacterium and Dysgonomonas genera were mainly involved in PHE degradation, which followed a first–order kinetic model (R2 = 0.652–0.928) with a degradation rate and half–life time of 0.127–1.177 d−1 and 0.589–2.912 d, respectively. A techno–economic assessment revealed that a virtuous operation of SW, EtOH recovery and biodegradation of the SW solution can allow the recovery of up to 1.35 tons of EtOH per ton of remediated sediment and the decrease of the overall costs by 50%.

Phenanthrene biodegradation in a fed–batch reactor treating a spent sediment washing solution: Techno–economic implications for the recovery of ethanol as extracting agent

Bianco F.
;
Race M.;
2022

Abstract

The continuous dredging of sediments contaminated by polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons such as phenanthrene (PHE) has required the employment of high–efficiency technologies, including sediment washing (SW). However, the large amount of generated spent SW effluents requires the development of effective, eco–friendly and cost–saving approaches, which can tackle the waste formation in favor of the recovery of chemicals. This study proposes the treatment of a spent SW solution containing ethanol (EtOH) as extracting agent, by testing different initial PHE concentrations (i.e. 20–140 mg L−1) within six consecutive cycles in a fed–batch bioreactor under aerobic conditions. The biological process achieved a PHE removal of 63–91% after the enrichment of PHE–degrading bacteria and the proper supplementation of nutrients, and was mainly affected by the initial PHE concentration value and the excessive decrease of pH and dissolved oxygen. Achromobacter, Sphingobacterium and Dysgonomonas genera were mainly involved in PHE degradation, which followed a first–order kinetic model (R2 = 0.652–0.928) with a degradation rate and half–life time of 0.127–1.177 d−1 and 0.589–2.912 d, respectively. A techno–economic assessment revealed that a virtuous operation of SW, EtOH recovery and biodegradation of the SW solution can allow the recovery of up to 1.35 tons of EtOH per ton of remediated sediment and the decrease of the overall costs by 50%.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11580/89373
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