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DOI: https://doi.org/10.4491/eer.2018.406
Regeneration of nitrate and phosphate from toilet wastewater using waste alumina adsorbent for cultivation of Spirulina platensis
Sang-Jun Lee1,2, Seonghwan Park1,2, Won Noh1,2, Dong-Hyuk Yeom2, Sooyeon Kim2, Dae-wook Kim2, and Jungmin Kim1,3
1Biomass Research Group, Gyeongnam Department of Environmental Toxicology & Chemistry, Korea Institute of Toxicology, Jinju-si, 52834, Republic of Korea
2Eco-Toxicology Research Group, Gyeongnam Department of Environmental Toxicology & Chemistry, Korea Institute of Toxicology, Jinju-si 52834, Republic of Korea
3Environmental Biology Research Group, Gyeongnam Department of Environmental Toxicology & Chemistry, Korea Institute of Toxicology, Jinju-si, 52834, Republic of Korea
Corresponding Author: Jungmin Kim ,Tel: +82-55-750-3766, Fax: +82-55-750-3799, Email: jungmin.kim@kitox.re.kr
Received: November 18, 2018;  Accepted: May 25, 2019.
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ABSTRACT
The use of different types of wastewater (WW) for the cultivation of microalgae and cyanobacteria during recent decades has provided important economic and environmental benefits. However, direct use of WW can lead to growth inhibition and biomass contamination. In the present study, we separated the key WW nutrients, namely nitrate and phosphate, by adsorption and regeneration and used the resulting regenerated water to cultivate the cyanobacterium Spirulina platensis. The adsorbent was granular γ-alumina derived from waste aluminum cans. This procedure recovered 19.9% of nitrate and 23.7% of phosphate from WW. The cyanobacterial cultures efficiently assimilated the nutrients from the medium prepared using regenerated WW, and the growth and nutrient uptake were similar to those in a synthetic medium. In addition, imposing nutrient limitations to increase carbohydrate productivity was easily achieved using regenerated wastewater nutrients, without requiring additional dilution or complex processing. In acute toxicity tests, the harvested biomass in a regenerated medium had similar toxicity levels compared to the biomass obtained from a synthetic medium. The proposed method of using regenerated WW to produce contamination-free biomass has broad potential applications.
Keywords: Nutrient recovery | Regenerated medium | Spirulina platensis | Toilet wastewater | Toxicity test
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