Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology

, Volume 43, Issue 2, pp 365–369 | Cite as

Use of activated carbon as a buffer in biofiltration of waste gases with fluctuating concentrations of toluene

  • F. J. Weber
  • S. Hartmans
Environmental Biotechnology Original Paper


Fluctuations in contaminant concentrations often adversely influence the effectiveness of bioreactors for waste gas treatment. Application of an adsorbent to minimize such fluctuations could improve the overall process. Therefore the buffer capacity of a number of activated carbons and other adsorbents was tested. The buffer capacity of the adsorbents depends on the desired concentration range of the contaminants entering the bioreactor and on the time available for desorption. When fluctuations between 0 and 1000 mg toluene m−3 were applied to a biofilter this resulted in significant concentrations of toluene leaving the biofilter. Using one selected type of activated carbon it was demonstrated that these fluctuations could be decreased to a value of about 300 mg m−3, which subsequently completely degraded in the biofilter.


Toluene Activate Carbon Buffer Capacity Significant Concentration Contaminant Concentration 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • F. J. Weber
    • 1
  • S. Hartmans
    • 1
  1. 1.Division of Industrial Microbiology, Department of Food ScienceWageningen Agricultural UniversityEV WageningenThe Netherlands

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