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Environ Technol. 2013 Mar-Apr;34(5-8):687-93.

Evaluation of a Ca-modified porphyritic andesite for ammonium removal in the anaerobic digestion process.

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Graduate School of Life and Environmental Science, University of Tsukuba, Tsukuba, Japan.


In this study, a Ca-modified porphyritic andesite (wheat-rice-stone (WRS)) was developed for the anaerobic digestion of ammonium-rich wastes. The Ca-modified WRS was obtained with integrated Ca-salt treatment and calcination. Scanning electron microscope and Brunauer-Emmett-Teller surface area analyses were performed to characterize the Ca-modified WRS, and adsorption isotherms and kinetics were investigated to clarify the adsorption mechanism. The ammonium adsorption process was explained well with a pseudo-second-order kinetic model. The specific surface area of the Ca-modified WRS was determined to be 4.56 sq. m/g, and the maximum NH4(+)-N adsorption capacity was determined to be 45.45 mg/g. These values are improvements over those of natural WRS. The ammonium adsorption capacity remained constant at a pH range from 5.0 to 9.0, which indicates that Ca-modified WRS is a promising material for various applications. The methane-production and chemical oxygen demand-removal aspects of anaerobic digestion were much improved with the addition of Ca-modified WRS. Therefore, Ca-modified WRS could be developed into a viable ammonium adsorbent for the anaerobic digestion of ammonium-rich wastes.

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