Use of Nanoparticles for Reduction of Odorant Production and Improvements in Dewaterability of Biosolids

  • Jeanette BrownEmail author


Odor production and dewaterability are two major issues of concern for many utilities during conditioning and beneficial use of biosolids. Several studies have been performed over the past decades to understand the factors influencing polymer-aided dewatering. In the last few years, much research has been performed to better understand the mechanisms of odor production from biosolids, and the factors that affect their production. However, no reliable methods have yet been developed to control these issues. This study proposes a new concept, using nanoparticle additives for improving dewatering and reducing odoers, based on an understanding of the mechanisms of dewatering and odorant production in biosolids. Nanoparticles (or nanomaterials) are novel materials with uniques physical and chemical properties. Ten different nanoparticles with varying chemistry and structures were developed and evaluated. Digested and return activated sludges from a number of treatment plants were tested using these nanoparticles for improvement in dewatering and reduction in odorant production. Results from these preliminary studies indicated that some of the nanoparticles were effective in improving dewatering and/or reducing odors. Depending upon the source of sludge, between 20% and 60% reduction in polymer dose was observed. This was accompanied by a 10–20% increase in cake solids. Further, 30% to over 70% reduction in the production of volatile organic sulfur compounds (odor causing compounds) was observed. Filtrate TSS as well as colloidal and soluble concentrations decreased by 50–75% using nanoparticles. While this study provide preliminary information on the role of nanoparticles for sludge dewatering and odor control, additional studies are required to understand the mechanisms and to improve nanoparticles composition and configuration for cost effective biosolids treatment using nanoparticles.


Nanoparticles Odor Dewaterability Biosolids 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Manhattan CollegeRiverdaleUSA

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