Lixiviado de aterros sanitários brasileiros: estudo de remoção do nitrogênio amoniacal por processo de arraste com ar ("stripping") / Sanitary landfill leachate in Brazil: evaluation of ammonia nitrogen removal by air stripping process




Sanitary landfills are considered as the most appropriate way for final disposal of municipal solid wastes in Brazil, in the technical and economical point of view. Open dumps have been progressively substituted by well engineered and operated landfills. However, landfills still present environmental risks due to the gas emission and leachate production. Gases can be piped and burnt or used to the electricity production, but the same can not be applied to the leachate. Moreover, the leachate treatment still represents a challenge to the expertise of the area because it was not already found an efficient solution for it. The physical-chemical characteristics of this effluent are not well known yet. This research sought to contribute to the solution of this problem by focusing in three main lines: detailed characterization of the leachate of Brazilian landfills, investigation of the possibilities of ammonia removal (the main pollutant present in the leachate) by air stripping process and evaluation of the importance of the ionic strength. The compilation of data from 40 sanitary landfills, distributed in all the geographic regions of Brazil, allowed the preparation of tables describing the typical characteristics of Brazilian leachates during the acid and methanogenic phases. It was presented not only the extreme values, but also the most probable ranges of variation. It was also possible to conclude that the acid phase lasts no more than 2 years in Brazilian landfills equipped with adequate leachate drainage systems. The study of ammonia air stripping was carried out in towers of 15 cm of diameter and 1 m of packed bed height. Corrugated plastic Raschig rings were used as packing media. Results showed that the aerated towers were able to remove the ammonia almost completely, independently if the pH of leachate was previously increased or not. The volume of air necessary to remove a determined mass of ammonia is always constant. Nitrification occurred only when total ammonia nitrogen concentrations were lower than 50 mg/L. This led to the conclusion that biological systems should not be applied directly to the treatment of raw methanogenic leachate. The high ionic strength of the leachate can be the responsible for the low efficiencies of coagulation-flocculation process applied to this effluent. Even though ionic strength is not usually considered by sanitary and environmental engineering, it should be considered in the studies dealing with leachate. Other aspects were also investigated, as the effect of the chloride in COD (chemical oxygen demand) measurements and the possibility of maggots growth in leachate ponds.


air stripping of ammonia physical-chemical treatment tratamento físico-químico aterro sanitário ionic strength tabelas de caracterização leachate tables of characterization lixiviado força iônica arraste de amônia sanitary landfill

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