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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Leetown, West Virginia » Cool and Cold Water Aquaculture Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #342475

Research Project: Developing and Refining Technologies for Sustainable Fish Growth in Closed Containment Systems

Location: Cool and Cold Water Aquaculture Research

Title: Woodchip bioreactors effectively treat aquaculture effluent

Author
item Lepine, Christine - FRESHWATER INSTITUTE
item Christianson, Laura - UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS
item Sharrer, Kata - FRESHWATER INSTITUTE
item Summerfelt, Steven - FRESHWATER INSTITUTE

Submitted to: Global Aquaculture Advocate
Publication Type: Trade Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/10/2016
Publication Date: 10/14/2016
Citation: Lepine, C., Christianson, L.E., Sharrer, K.L., Summerfelt, S.T. 2016. Woodchip bioreactors effectively treat aquaculture effluent. Global Aquaculture Advocate [serial online]. Available: https://www.aquaculturealliance.org/advocate/woodchip-bioreactors-effectively-treat-aquaculture-effluet/.

Interpretive Summary: Nutrients, in particular nitrogen and phosphorus, can create eutrophication problems in any watershed. Preventing water quality impairment requires controlling nutrients from both point-source and non-point source discharges. Woodchip bioreactors are one relatively new approach that can be utilized for both applications. Four pilot-scale bioreactors treating point-source aquacultural wastewater were evaluated over varying hydraulic retention times for nitrate removal efficiency, phosphorus leaching and/or uptake, and clogging potential of the woodchip media. Woodchip bioreactors demonstrate considerable potential over other denitrification technologies due to their small ecological footprint, low energy requirements, enhancement of a natural treatment process, engineered designs to meet specific water quality guidelines, and relatively low installation and maintenance costs.

Technical Abstract: Nutrients, in particular nitrogen and phosphorus, can create eutrophication problems in any watershed. Preventing water quality impairment requires controlling nutrients from both point-source and non-point source discharges. Woodchip bioreactors are one relatively new approach that can be utilized for both applications. Four pilot-scale bioreactors treating point-source aquacultural wastewater were evaluated over varying hydraulic retention times for nitrate removal efficiency, phosphorus leaching and/or uptake, and clogging potential of the woodchip media. Woodchip bioreactors demonstrate considerable potential over other denitrification technologies due to their small ecological footprint, low energy requirements, enhancement of a natural treatment process, engineered designs to meet specific water quality guidelines, and relatively low installation and maintenance costs.