Nutrient recovery from treated wastewater by a hybrid electrochemical sequence integrating bipolar membrane electrodialysis and membrane capacitive deionization†
The growing needs for sustainable nutrient management and pollution control have motivated the development of novel technologies for nutrient recovery from wastewater. However, most of the existing technologies require extensive use of chemicals and intensive consumption of energy to achieve substantial recovery of nutrients. Herein, we present a hybrid electrochemical sequence integrating two relatively novel electrochemical processes, bipolar membrane electrodialysis (BMED) and membrane capacitive deionization (MCDI), for simultaneous removal of phosphorus and nitrogen. Specifically, the BMED process is employed to alkalify the wastewater to facilitate struvite precipitation and the MCDI process is used to further reduce the ammonia concentration in the effluent and concentrate the excess ammonia to a small stream. The electrochemical sequence is demonstrated to remove ∼89% of phosphorus and ∼77% of ammonia, recovering ∼81% of wastewater as a high-quality effluent that can be discharged or reused. This electrochemical treatment train minimizes chemical use and has competitive energy consumption as compared to electrochemical processes for nutrient recovery from wastewater.
- This article is part of the themed collection: Capacitive deionisation and electrosorption 2020