The possible shift of a bioreactor for NO3- removal from predominantly denitrification (DEN) to dissimilatory nitrate reduction to ammonium (DNRA) by elevated electron donor supply was investigated. By increasing the C/NO3- ratio in one of two initially identical reactors, the production of high sulfide concentrations was induced. The response of the dissimilatory NO3- reduction processes to the increased availability of organic carbon and sulfide was monitored in a batch incubation system. The expected shift from a DEN- towards a DNRA-dominated bioreactor was not observed, also not under conditions where DNRA would be thermodynamically favorable. Remarkably, the microbial community exposed to a high C/NO3- ratio and sulfide concentration did not use the most energy-gaining process.
Bioresource Technology, 2014, Vol 171, Issue 1, p. 291-297
Dissimilatory nitrate reduction; Microbial aggregates; Sulfide; USB reactor