The role of water in the performance of biofilters: Parameterization of pressure drop and sorption capacities for common packing materials

Antonio D. Dorado, Javier Lafuente, David Gabriel, Xavier Gamisans

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

34 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The presence of water in a biofilter is critical in keeping microorganisms active and abating pollutants. In addition, the amount of water retained in a biofilter may drastically affect the physical properties of packing materials and packed beds. In this study, the influence of water on the pressure drop and sorption capacities of 10 different packing materials were experimentally studied and compared. Pressure drop was characterized as a function of dynamic hold-up, porosity and gas flow rate. Experimental data were fitted to a mathematical expression based on a modified Ergun correlation. Sorption capacities for toluene were determined for both wet and dry materials to obtain information about the nature of interactions between the contaminant, the packing materials and the aqueous phase. The experimental sorption capacities of materials were fitted to different isotherm models for gas adsorption in porous materials. The corresponding confidence interval was determined by the Fisher information matrix. The results quantified the dynamic hold-up effect resulting from the significant increase in the pressure drop throughout the bed, i.e. the financial cost of driving air, and the negative effect of this air on the total amount of hydrophobic pollutant that can be adsorbed by the supports. Furthermore, the results provided equations for ascertaining water presence and sorption capacities that could be widely used in the mathematical modeling of biofilters. © 2010 Elsevier B.V.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)693-702
JournalJournal of Hazardous Materials
Volume180
Issue number1-3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2010

Keywords

  • Biofiltration
  • Packing materials
  • Pressure drop
  • Sorption
  • Water influence

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