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J Environ Sci Health A Tox Hazard Subst Environ Eng. 2018 Jul 3;53(8):708-717. doi: 10.1080/10934529.2018.1439854. Epub 2018 Feb 22.

Effects of the ammonium loading rate on nitrite-oxidizing activity during nitrification at a high dose of inorganic carbon.

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a Center for Water Resource Cycle Research, Korea Institute of Science and Technology (KIST) , Seoul , Republic of Korea.
b Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering , Yonsei University , Seoul , Republic of Korea.
c Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering , Yonsei University , Seoul , Republic of Korea.
d Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering , Pusan National University , Busan , Republic of Korea.


In this study, the effects of the ammonium loading rate (ALR) and inorganic carbon loading rate (ILR) on the nitrification performance and composition of a nitrifying bacterial community were investigated in a moving bed biofilm reactor, using poly(vinyl alcohol) (PVA) sponge cubes as a supporting carrier. Between the two ALRs of 0.36 and 2.16 kg-N m-1 d-1, stable partial nitritation was achieved at the higher ALR. Inorganic carbon was dosed at high levels: 33.1, 22.0, 16.4, 11.0, and 5.4 times the theoretical amount. Nonetheless, nitrification efficiency was not affected by the ILR at the two ALRs. Quantitative PCR analysis of ammonia- and nitrite-oxidizing bacteria revealed that ALR is an important determinant of partial nitritation by accumulating ammonia-oxidizing bacteria in the nitrification system. In comparison, two nitrite-oxidizing bacterial genera (Nitrobacter and Nitrospira) showed almost the same relative abundance at various ALRs and ILRs. Terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism targeting the gene of ammonia monooxygenase subunit A revealed that Nitrosomonas europaea dominated under all conditions.


Ammonium loading rate; inorganic carbon; nitrification; nitrifying bacterial community

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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