Document Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science in Environmental Science - (M.S.)


Chemical Engineering, Chemistry and Environmental Science

First Advisor

Baltzis, Basil

Second Advisor

Lewandowski, Gordon

Third Advisor

Trattner, Richard B.


The kinetics of phenol biodegradation were studied by using a pure culture of Pseudomonas resinovorans (ATCC 14235). Experiments were performed in shaker flasks and samples were analyzed for biomass content (based on optical density), and for phenol concentrations (based on HPLC measurements). The experimental data indicated that phenol is an inhibitory substrate at high concentrations. Specific growth rate data were fitted to an Andrews' expression with good success. The regressed kinetic constants were also used in predicting phenol biodegradation as a function of time. It was found that predicted and actual experimental values were close at least for the first part of each experiment. Deviations between experimental data and predicted values are believed to be due to oxygen limitation at high biomass concentrations. Oxygen was not monitored in detail during this study. Periodic plating indicated that the culture remained pure in all experiments.