Effect of high ammonia concentration on uasb reactor treating sanitary landfill leachate
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Landfill leachate always contains high amounts of organic and inorganic waste which make its treatment hard. Combined biological and chemical treatment methods should be used to reduce high pollution loads to the discharge limits. Anaerobic digestion is the ideal method for removal of high organic carbon loads. However many inhibitory substances adversely affect the process stability and methane yield. High free ammonia concentration is primary cause of inhibition in anaerobic treatment. In this study leachate coming from Istanbul Komurcuoda Landfill was treated with upflow anaerobic sludge bed (UASB) reactor for 600 days. After inoculation of reactor, influent ammonia concentration was gradually increased from 100 mg/L to 2800 mg/L in order to observe the free ammonia effect on anaerobic treatment. Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD) and Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD) removal efficiencies decreased gradually from 95% to 15% while ammonia concentration was increased. Although anaerobic bacteria have been adapted to ammonia concentration, inhibitory effect of ammonia was observed at 1000 mg/L ammonia concentration.