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[Publication]: Effects of Operating Parameters on Salinity Accumulation in a Bioelectrochemically-Assisted Osmotic Membrane Bioreactor

Dr. Yuli Yang and Professor Hailiang Song published a research paper in Bioresource Technology (2020: 124208)


Salinity accumulation in osmotic membrane bioreactors (OMBRs) is one of the key challenges, which can be mitigated in situ by reverse-fluxed solute transport through integration of bioelectrochemical systems (BES). The effects of several key operating parameters on salinity accumulation were investigated. Salinity accumulation depended on balance between reversal solute flux (RSF) and reverse-fluxed ammonium (RFA) transport, which was driven by electrical migration and concentration diffusion. DS concentration was the primary factor influencing RSF, and the lowest DS concentration exhibited the minimum solute leakage. Aeration played a vital role in RFA transport, and a higher aeration helped to enhance RFA transport. Increased current generation (i.e., influent flow rate of 0.5 mL min-1 and external resistance of 5.0 Ω) contributed to RFA migration. The lack of electrolyte addition in catholyte contributed to RFA diffusion. These optimal parameters encourage the further development of an effective strategy for salinity mitigation in BES-based OMBR technology.