Development of an algal treatment system for selenium removal: Effects of environmental factors and post-treatment processing of Se-laden algae

Fang Liu, Jung Chen Huang, Chuanqi Zhou, Wenqiao Gao, Shaofeng Xia, Shengbing He, Weili Zhou

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In developing an algal treatment system, selenium (Se) removal efficiency by Chlorella vulgaris was evaluated under various conditions such as Se concentration, algal density, temperature and pH. A maximum removal efficiency plateau of ∼90% was observed between 1000–3000 μg Se/L while the tolerance of Se toxicity was found at 6000 μg Se/L. C. vulgaris of 0.75 g DW/L showed the highest removal efficiency (84%), and volatilization was dominant below 1.37 g DW/L. Se volatilization was two times higher at 25 °C than at 20 °C in the first 24 h. Moreover, the highest removal efficiency (77%) was obtained at pH 8.0, compared to 66.5% at pH 6.5 and 40% at pH 10.0. To prevent ecotoxicity, Se laden algae were further burned to ashes or filtered out by Anodonta woodiana. After burning, biomass Se was reduced by 99%, with organo-Se entirely converted into inorganic Se, lowering Se bioavailability. A. woodiana removed 54% of Se in 24 h, leading to Se bioaccumulation in soft tissues, which may serve as dietary Se supplements for human health. Our results suggest the cleanup of Se-contaminated water from either agricultural runoff or industrial discharge could be achieved using an algal treatment system with minimum potential ecotoxicity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)546-554
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Hazardous Materials
Volume365
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Mar 5

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

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