Biodegradation of MIB and geosmin with slow sand filters

Shu Ting Hsieh, Tsair Fuh Lin, Gen Shuh Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


This study evaluated the biodegradation ofMIB (2-methylisoborneol) and geosmin (trans-1,10-dimethyl-trans- 9-decalol) in simulated slow sand filtration (SSF) columns and in batch reactors. The results showed that both MIB and geosmin were biodegradable in the two systems. In batch experiments, the overall removals forMIB and geosmin were 50% and 78%, respectively, after 7 days of contact time. Volatilization loss plays an important role for geosmin in batch systems. Simulated SSF column studies also showed that more than 50% of geosmin and MIB were degraded by the microbial on the sand surface of a slow sand filter. With a filtration rate of 5 m/day, the simulated SSF degraded MIB from 48% to 69% and geosmin from 87% to 96%. The rapid biodegradation ofMIB and geosmin in SSF column tests was attributed to the use of filter sands from the SSF unit in the Kinmen water treatment plant, where the microbial had been acclimated to both MIB and geosmin. The results also showed that more than 70% of the geosmin was removed in the top portion of the filter (~10 cm); while the removal of MIB occurred throughout the entire column depth. The results of this study demonstrated that slow flow through preacclimated sand was effective for control of MIB and geosmin in drinking water.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)951-957
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Environmental Science and Health - Part A Toxic/Hazardous Substances and Environmental Engineering
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2010 Jan 1

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Engineering


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