Treatment of benzene and n-hexane mixtures in trickle-bed air biofilters

Ashraf Aly Hassan, George A. Sorial

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Trickle-bed air biofilters (TBABs) are suitable for treatment of hydrophilic volatile organic compounds, but they pose a challenge for hydrophobic compounds. Three laboratory-scale TBABs were used for the treatment of an airstream contaminated with different ratios of n-hexane and benzene mixtures. The ratios studied were 1:1, 2:1, and 1:3 n-hexane:benzene by volume. Each TBAB was operated at a pH of 4 and a temperature of 20 °C. The use of acidic-buffered nutrient solution was targeted for changing the microorganism consortium to fungi as the main biodegradation element. The experimental plan was designed to investigate the long-term performance of the TBABs with an emphasis on different mixture loading rates, removal efficiency with TBAB depth, volatile suspended solids, and carbon mass balance closure. n-Hexane loading rate was kept constant in the TBABs for comparison reasons and ranged from 4 to 22 g/( Corresponding benzene loadings ranged from 4 to 43 g/( Generally, benzene behavior in the TBAB was superior to that of n-hexane because of its higher solubility. n-Hexane showed improved performance in the 2:1 mixing ratio as compared with the other two ratios.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)201-210
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of the Air and Waste Management Association
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2011
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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