Kinetics of methanogens in an expanded-bed reactor

Yi Tin Wang, Makram T. Suidan, Bruce E. Rittman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


A biofilm mathematical model for single-stage substrate utilization was developed for an expanded-bed, activated-carbon anaerobic reactor. The concepts of liquid-layer mass transport, biofilm molecular diffusion, and Monod kinetics were incorporated into the model. During 849 days of continuous operation, four steady state operating conditions were obtained, covering a wide range of feed acetate concentration. Steady state data collected when the feed acetate concentrations were 1,600 mg/L and 3,200 mg/L and weekly data obtained when the feed acetate concentration was 6,400 mg/L were used to estimate biokinetic parameters. The model input for each data set consisted of the acetate flux and the log-mean bulk acetate concentration within the reactor. The model was solved for attached biomass using each data set and various trial values of the two Monod constants, ka, Ksa, and a microbial biofilm density, Xaf. BBest estimates of ka, Ksa, and Xaf were obtained by observing the lowest value of the minimum sum of squared deviations between the modelpredicted biomass and measured biomass. The biofilm kinetics were characterized as fully penetrated, with no significant external mass transport resistance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)155-170
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Environmental Engineering (United States)
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1986

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Environmental Science
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Civil and Structural Engineering


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