Thesis Details

Thesis Title: An evaluation of anaerobic/aerobic treatment for textile reactive dye color and toxicity removal
Thesis Author: George Coley
Abstract: Currently, most textile dye effluent is treated aerobically in an activated sludge basin where aerobic microorganisms decompose waste components. However, conventional aerobic biological treatment systems are not highly effective on reactive dye color removal. The aerobic bacteria are not capable of breaking all of the strong chemical bonds that were created for dye stability. Therefore, significant amounts of color are released into lakes and streams. Until recently, anaerobic biological treatment was used mainly in the brewing, food processing, and pulp and paper industries because anaerobic bacteria are effective on high oxygen demand waste effluent (Manahan, 1991). The textile industry has not used conventional anaerobic treatments because textile waste is generally considered to have low oxygen demands. Furthermore, anaerobic treatment usually requires longer detention times for complete treatment in comparison to aerobic systems. However, recent lab-scale research suggests that combined anaerobic/aerobic treatment is a more effective and potentially less expensive method for color removal than conventional aerobic treatment. Due to the low strength and low biodegradability of textile dyes, methods of anaerobic treatment that sustain an adequate biomass independent of the metabolism of dyes are suspected to be required. In this study, sludge digestion and treatment of dyes for color removal via combined anaerobic/aerobic processes were conducted concurrently. Findings indicated that color removal is effective under anaerobic conditions; however, subsequent aerobic treatment is required for organic removal.