Application of the gas tracer method for measuring oxygen transfer rates in subsurface flow constructed wetlands
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The oxygen transfer rate (OTR) has a significant impact on the design, optimal operation and modelling of constructed wetlands treating wastewater. Oxygen consumption is very fast in wetlands and the OTR cannot be determined using an oxygen mass balance. This problem is circumvented in this study by applying the gas tracer method. Experiments were conducted in an unplanted gravel bed (dimensions L × W × d 125 × 50 × 35 cm filled with a 30-cm layer of 10–11-mm gravel) and a planted horizontal subsurface flow constructed wetland (HSSFCW) (L × W × d 110 × 70 × 38 cm filled with a 30-cm layer of 3.5-mm gravel with Phragmites australis). Tap water saturated with propane as gas tracer (pure or commercial cooking gas, depending on the test) was used. The mass transfer ratio between oxygen and commercial propane gas was quite constant and averaged R = 1.03, which is slightly lower than the value of R = 1.39 that is usually reported for pure propane. The OTR ranged from 0.31 to 5.04 g O2 m−2 d−1 in the unplanted gravel bed and from 0.3 to 3.2 g O2 m−2 d−1 in the HSSFCW, depending on the hydraulic retention time (HRT). The results of this study suggest that the OTR in HSSFCW is very low for the oxygen demand of standard wastewater and the OTR calculations based on mass balances and theoretical stoichiometric considerations overestimate OTR values by a factor that ranges from 10 to 100. The gas tracer method is a promising tool for determining OTR in constructed wetlands, with commercial gas proving to be a viable low-cost alternative for determining OTR.
5th. IWA International Young Water Professional 2010, qua atorga la International Water association
CitationTyroller, L. [et al.]. Application of the gas tracer method for measuring oxygen transfer rates in subsurface flow constructed wetlands. "Water research", Juliol 2010, vol. 44, núm. 14, p. 4217-4225.