Continuous phenol removal using Nocardia hydrocarbonoxydans in spouted bed contactor: Shock load study
Shock load studies are essential to investigate the suitability of biocontactors in degradation of pollutants. In the present work, the degradation of phenol by immobilized Nocardia hydrocarbonoxydans in a spouted bed contactor was conducted. Granular activated carbon (GAC) and polymer beads were tested for the immobilization of cells of N. hydrocarbonoxydans-NCIM 2386. Initially, batch immobilization study was conducted to know the quantity of immobilized microorganisms per gram of solids and then the immobilized solids were used in the spouted bed contactor for phenol degradation. Also, the shock loading of phenol and hydraulic shock load test was performed to check the stability of operation. The immobilized Nocardia cells sustained the shock load and hydraulic load of phenol. Increase of influent phenol concentration and dilution rates increased the steady state effluent phenol concentration. Almost 95% degradation at maximum phenol loading of 0.73 gL-1h-1 was achieved. GAC has more attached biomass weight compared to polymer beads.