Document Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

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


Civil and Environmental Engineering

First Advisor

Gordon Lewandowski

Second Advisor

Basil Baltzis

Third Advisor

Peter G. Petropoulos


The biological degradation of phenol, with either 2-chlorophenol, 2,6-dichlorophenol, or nitrobenzene as cosubstrates was studied in aerated five - liter batch reactors using mixed liquor from the Passaic Valley Sewarage Commissioners wastewater treatment plant (Newark, NJ). The initial substrate concentrations were: 100 – 150 ppm phenol, 10 - 20 ppm 2-cp, 10 ppm 2,3 dcp, and 10 - 20 ppm nitrobenzene. The concentration vs. time data were fit to three kinetic models: zero-order, first-order, and Monod(assuming constant biomass). Most of the data were best fit by either the Monod or zero-order model. For all compounds tested, biodegradation was the primary removal mechanism.

Biodegradation of phenol appeared to be inhibited by the presence of 2,6 dichlorophenol or nitrobenzene, while conversely the preserce of phenol significantly improved the degradation rate for nitrobenzene.