Biological nutrient removal from leachate using a pilot liquid-solid circulating fluidized bed bioreactor (LSCFB)

Ahmed Eldyasti, Nabin Chowdhury, George Nakhla, Jesse Zhu

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

44 Citations (Scopus)


Biological treatment of landfill leachate is a concern due to toxicity, high ammonia, low biodegradable organic matter concentrations, and low carbon-to-nitrogen ratio. To study the reliability and commercial viability of leachate treatment using an integrated liquid-solid circulating fluidized bed bioreactor (LSCFB), a pilot-scale LSCFB was established at the Adelaide Pollution Control Plant, London, Ontario, Canada. Anoxic and aerobic columns were used to optimize carbon and nutrient removal capability from leachate using 600μm lava rock with a total porosity of 61%, at empty bed contact times (EBCTs) of 0.55, 0.49, and 0.41d. The LSCFB achieved COD, nitrogen, and phosphorus removal efficiencies of 85%, 80%, and 70%, respectively at a low carbon-to-nitrogen ratio of 3:1 and nutrients loading rates of 2.15kgCOD/(m3d), 0.70kgN/(m3d), and 0.014kgP/(m3d), as compared with 60-77% COD and 70-79% nitrogen removal efficiencies achieved by upflow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) and moving bed bioreactor (MBBR), respectively. The LSCFB effluent characterized by ≤35mgSBOD/L, <35mgNH4-N/L, <1.0mgPO4-P/L, and 37mgVSS/L can easily meet sewer by-law requirements. Remarkably low yields of 0.13, 0.15, and 0.16gVSS/g COD were observed at long biological solids retention times (SRTs) of 31, 38 and 44d.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)289-297
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Hazardous Materials
Issue number1-3
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Biomass yield
  • Denitrification
  • Landfill leachate
  • Liquid-solid circulating fluidized bed
  • Nitrification

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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