Date of Award

Spring 5-31-1988

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Chemical Engineering - (M.S.)


Chemical Engineering, Chemistry and Environmental Science

First Advisor

Samir S. Sofer

Second Advisor

Piero M. Armenante

Third Advisor

Barbara B. Kebbekus


The performance of immobilized cells in the treatment of hazardous waste was investigated using a recirculation flow reactor run in a batch mode. A mixed microbial population from a municipal wastewater treatment plant was immobilized in calcium alginate gel. The bio-oxidation ability of these microbes towards a model toxin (2-chlorophenol) was studied. The process parameters studied were as follows:

  1. Flow rate of the recycle stream;
  2. Biomass loading;
  3. Spiking concentration of 2-chlorophenol;
  4. Use of buffered vs. non-buffered defined medium.

Dissolved oxygen concentration was monitored using a flow Clark-type dissolved oxygen probe. Oxygen consumption was correlated with the biodegradation of 2-chlorophenol. Physical removal of 2-chlorophenol by air stripping in the absence of microorganisms was also determined and the removal rate compared with the biodegradation rate obtained. It was found that biodegradation was the primary removal mechanism.