Water, Air, & Soil Pollution

, 224:1530

A Laboratory Column Study on the Biodegradation of Toluene and Methyl tert–Butyl Ether: The Effect of Substrate Interactions

  • Seung-Gun Chung
  • Dong-Ju Kim
  • Sang-Hyup Lee
  • Jae-Woo Choi
Article

DOI: 10.1007/s11270-013-1530-4

Cite this article as:
Chung, SG., Kim, DJ., Lee, SH. et al. Water Air Soil Pollut (2013) 224: 1530. doi:10.1007/s11270-013-1530-4
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Abstract

We investigated the effects of substrate interactions on the degradation of toluene and methyl tert-butyl ether (MTBE) by Pseudomonas putida during transport through quartz sand because of the coexistence of toluene and MTBE in aquifer systems. A laboratory test was conducted for a pulse injection of a toluene and/or MTBE solution with and without bacteria into a saturated sand column. We found that the effect of toluene on MTBE was negative because the mass recovery of MTBE increased by 30 % when toluene was added, whereas the effect of MTBE on toluene degradation was positive because the mass recovery of toluene decreased by 7 %. These results were comparable with those of a previous batch study on substrate interactions which reported that toluene can be more negative than MTBE at concentrations higher than 25 mg/L. This finding indicates that substrate interaction is also an important mechanism, controlling the fate of contaminants during transport through aquifer systems. In addition, bacteria-facilitated transport was also observed for both substrates. Therefore, for an efficient bioremediation scheme, care should be taken for substrate interaction as well as for bacteria-facilitated transport in porous media.

Keywords

Column studyMTBEPseudomonas putidaSubstrate interactionTolueneToluene-degrading bacterium

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Seung-Gun Chung
    • 1
    • 2
  • Dong-Ju Kim
    • 3
  • Sang-Hyup Lee
    • 1
  • Jae-Woo Choi
    • 1
  1. 1.Center for Water Resource Cycle ResearchKorea Institute of Science and TechnologySeoulRepublic of Korea
  2. 2.Graduate School of Convergence Green Technology and PolicyKorea UniversitySeoulRepublic of Korea
  3. 3.Department of Earth and Environmental SciencesKorea UniversitySeoulRepublic of Korea