Integration of biofiltration and advanced oxidation processes for tertiary treatment of an oil refinery wastewater aiming at water reuse.Environ Sci Pollut Res Int. 2016 May; 23(10):9730-41.ES
The combination of biological and chemical oxidation processes is an interesting approach to remove ready, poor, and non-biodegradable compounds from complex industrial wastewaters. In this study, biofiltration followed by H2O2/UV oxidation (or microfiltration) and final reverse osmosis (RO) step was employed for tertiary treatment of an oil refinery wastewater. Biofiltration alone allowed obtaining total organic carbon (TOC), chemical oxygen demand (COD), UV absorbance at 254 nm (UV254), ammonium, and turbidity removal of around 46, 46, 23, 50, and 61 %, respectively. After the combined biological-chemical oxidation treatment, TOC and UV254 removal amounted to 88 and 79 %, respectively. Whereas, the treatment performance achieved with different UV lamp powers (55 and 95 W) and therefore distinct irradiance levels (26.8 and 46.3 mW/cm(2), respectively) were very similar and TOC and UV254 removal rates were highly affected by the applied C/H2O2 ratio. Silt density index (SDI) was effectively reduced by H2O2/UV oxidation, favoring further RO application. C/H2O2 ratio of 1:4, 55 W UV lamp, and 20-min oxidation reaction corresponded to the experimental condition which provided the best cost/benefit ratio for TOC, UV254, and SDI reduction from the biofilter effluent. The array of treatment processes proposed in this study has shown to be adequate for tertiary treatment of the oil refinery wastewater, ensuring the mitigation of membrane fouling problems and producing a final effluent which is suitable for reuse applications.