Water, Air, & Soil Pollution

, 226:2242 | Cite as

Formaldehyde Removal from Airstreams Using a Biofilter with a Mixture of Compost and Woodchips Medium

  • Mohsen Rezaei
  • Mehdi Fazlzadehdavil
  • Yaghoub HajizadehEmail author


The performance of a laboratory-scale biofilter packed with a mixture of compost and woodchip on formaldehyde removal from polluted air streams was investigated. The reactor was inoculated with aerobic sludge as a source of bacteria, obtained from a municipal wastewater treatment plant. A nutrient solution was daily added to the reactor media. An airflow containing different concentrations of formaldehyde (from 20 ± 2 to 276 ± 5 mg m−3) was introduced into the reactor. In inlet formaldehyde concentration, an average removal efficiency and elimination capacity of 91 % and 0.36 g m−3 h−1 were attained, respectively, at180 s empty bed residence time (EBRT). After acclimatization of the system for increased formaldehyde concentrations of up to 276 ± 5 mg m−3 and for EBRT of 180 s, those values were stabilized at around 72 % and 3.98g−3 h−1, respectively. The experimental results showed that the system was effective for a high loading rate of formaldehyde with an acceptable EBRT. Compared to the application of compost alone as a media, a mixture of compost and woodchip (50/50 v/v%) enhanced the performance of the biofilter. The most predominant microorganism involved in the biodegradation of formaldehyde was a species of citrobacter called Citrobacter freundii, an aerobic gram-negative bacillus. Pressure drop of the reactor over the entire operations was about 1 mmH2O m−1.


Biofiltration Bioreactor Formaldehyde Air pollution 



The authors would like to gratefully acknowledge the research deputy of Isfahan University of Medical Sciences (IUMS) for support for this work via grant no. 391241.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mohsen Rezaei
    • 1
  • Mehdi Fazlzadehdavil
    • 2
  • Yaghoub Hajizadeh
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Environmental Health Engineering, School of Public HealthIsfahan University of Medical SciencesIsfahanIran
  2. 2.Department of Environmental Health Engineering, School of Public HealthArdabil University of Medical SciencesArdabilIran

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