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Methyl ethyl ketone removal using microbial attached zeolite biofilter

Charles, W. and Ho, G. (2013) Methyl ethyl ketone removal using microbial attached zeolite biofilter. In: Proceeding of the 5th IWA Odour and Air Emissions Conference Jointly Held With 10th Conference on Biofiltration for Air Pollution Control, 4 - 7 March, San Francisco, CA, USA

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Biofiltration has been an increasingly popular process to minimise/eliminate emissions of volatile organic compounds from industrial sources. In this study, we investigate the use of natural zeolite as biofilter media to treat methyl ethyl ketone (MEK) contaminated air stream. Dried natural zeolite was found to be effective in adsorbing MEK in gas phase. The isotherm adsorption was found to follow Langmuir’s isotherm, with an adsorption capacity of 1.1-2.4 mg/g zeolite (2.4-4.0 mm diameter) at partial pressures of 0.1-0.5 mM MEK at equilibrium. In a continuous-flow system, at air flow rate of 1L/L/min and MEK concentration of around 400 ppmv, the adsorption capacity was 1.8 mgMEK/g zeolite. Much smaller amount of MEK were found to be adsorbed by wet zeolite indicates that MEK adsorption mechanism of natural zeolite from gas phase is via volume filling of zeolite micropores.

To combine MEK adsorption and biodegradation in a single step, two lab-scale bio-filters were set up using natural zeolite inoculated with mixed microbes from a local composting facility and pure culture of Pseudomonas veronii. It was found that under continuous fixed bed conditions with a flow-rate of 0.5/L/L/min and a MEK concentration of 250 ppmv, 80-90% MEK removal could be achieved from both trials.

Publication Type: Conference Paper
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Engineering and Information Technology
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