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Intimate coupling of biological advanced oxidation processes for environmental de-pollution and biodiesel production (BioAOPBDies)
Start date: Feb 1, 2012, End date: Jan 31, 2014 PROJECT  FINISHED 

This project aims on the development of novel environmental friendly technologies with two main objectives: a) the removal of recalcitrant pollutants and b) the concomitant production of biodiesel. The goals will be achieved by the coupling of “biological” and “advanced oxidation processes” in order to enhance the removal of stable environmental pollutants and the utilization of the biomass developed for biodiesel production.Many of the technologies applied for the removal of environmental pollutants are not effective either due to the fact that they are not environmental friendly or due to their inefficacy on the removal of recalcitrant pollutants such as pharmaceutical and personal care products. Here, advanced oxidation processes coupled with biological systems (ABOP) will be applied. This is an environmental friendly technology and highly effective on the decomposition of poorly biodegradable substances. A multi-methodology study will be carried out to explore mechanistic aspects of the procedure involving enzymatic activity, the use of mixed and pure cultures, identification of intermediate oxidation agents and by-products, the effect of mediators etc.In order to fully exploit the “green” potential of this methodology the biomass developed during the degradation of environmental pollutants, which is considered a cheap and reliable source, will be used for biodiesel production.A detail study using suspended growth and attached growth reactors will be performed in order to extract the appropriate conditions to enhance both pollutants degradation and biodiesel production. Both main objectives will be applied in a pilot scale wastewater treatment plant (WWTP).Finally, both main objectives of this project (environmental protection and biofuels production) are essential characteristics of the EU FP7 framework and can easily find industrial application in WWTP. The results are expected to give further insights in both fields, which are novel and yet unexplored.
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