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Abstract

Bentonite is clay rock, which is created by decomposition of vulcanic glass. It is formed from mixture of clay minerals of smectite group, mainly montmorillonite, beidellite and nontronite. Its typical characteristics is, that when in contact with water, it intensively swells. First who used this term was W.C. Knight in 1887. The rock had been named after town Fort Benton in American state Montana. For its interesting technological properties and whiteness has wide technological use. Bentonite is selectively mined and according to its final use separately modified, which results in high quality product with specific parameters. In the beginning of 21st century belong bentonite moulding mixtures in foundry to always perspective. Mainly increased ratio of ductile cast iron castings production cannot be ensured without the need of quality bentonite. Great area of scope remains to further research of moulding materials, which return also to bentonite producers.
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Abstract

In this study, the dependence between volumetric exchange rate (n) in an SBR (Sequencing Batch Reactor) with a modified cycle and simultaneous nitrification and denitrification (SND) efficiency during the treatment of anaerobic sludge digester supernatant was determined. In the SBR cycle alternating three aeration phases (with limited dissolved oxygen (DO) concentration up to 0.7 mg O2/L) and two mixing phases were applied. The lengths of each aeration and mixing phases were 4 and 5.5 h, respectively. Independently of n, a total removal of ammonium was achieved. However, at n = 0.1 d-1 and n = 0.3 d-1 nitrates were the main product of nitrification, while at n = 0.5 d-1, both nitrates and nitrites occurred in the effluent. Under these operational conditions, despite low COD/N (ca. 4) ratio in the influent, denitrification in activated sludge was observed. A higher denitrification efficiency at n = 0.5 d-1 (51.3%) than at n = 0.1 d-1 (7.8%) indicated that n was a crucial factor influencing SND via nitrite and nitrate in the SBR with a low oxygen concentration in aeration phases.
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Abstract

The paper deals with the problem of the determination of the effects of temperature on the efficiency of the nitrification process of industrial wastewater, as well as its toxicity to the test organisms. The study on nitrification efficiency was performed using wastewater from one of Polish chemical factories. The chemical factory produces nitrogen fertilizers and various chemicals. The investigated wastewater was taken from the influent to the industrial mechanical-biological wastewater treatment plant (WWTP). The WWTP guaranteed high removal efficiency of organic compounds defined as chemical oxygen demand (COD) but periodical failure of nitrification performance was noted in last years of the WWTP operation. The research aim was to establish the cause of recurring failures of nitrification process in the above mentioned WWTP. The tested wastewater was not acutely toxic to activated sludge microorganisms. However, the wastewater was genotoxic to activated sludge microorganisms and the genotoxicity was greater in winter than in spring time. Analysis of almost 3 years’ period of the WWTP operation data and laboratory batch tests showed that activated sludge from the WWTP under study is very sensitive to temperature changes and the nitrification efficiency collapses rapidly under 16°C. Additionally, it was calculated that in order to provide the stable nitrification, in winter period the sludge age (SRT) in the WWTP should be higher than 35 days.
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Abstract

The laboratory experiment was set up on a podzolic soil in two variants. In one of them non-sterile sewage sludge was introduced into the soil, and in the second - the same sludge but subjected previously to the process of sterilisation. In both variants the same doses of the sludge were applied: 30 (1%), 75 (2.5%), 150 (5%), 300 (10%) and 600 Mg·ha-1 (20%). Then, after 0.5, 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 months, the soil of both experimental variants was analysed for the numbers of bacteria and fungi decomposing proteins, the rate of the process of ammonification, the rate of the process of nitrification, and for proteolytic activity. The results obtained revealed a stimulating effect of the sludge, both sterile and non-sterile, on the numbers of the microbial groups under study and on the rate of nitrification and protease activity. Only the process of ammonification was subject to inhibition. The observed effects of the sludge were the most pronounced in the case of the higher sludge doses. Significantly greater numbers of protein-decomposing fungi and higher activity of almost all (except for ammonifcation) analysed biochemical parameters in the soil with non-sterile sludge compared to that with sterile sludge indicate an effect of microorganisms from the sludge on the microbiological transformations of nitrogen in soil amended with sewage sludge.
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