Advanced regeneration and fixed-bed study of ammonium and potassium removal from anaerobic digested wastewater by natural zeolite

J Environ Sci (China). 2013 May 1;25(5):954-61. doi: 10.1016/s1001-0742(12)60115-6.


Highly efficient regeneration of natural zeolite was developed in conjunction with the removal of high concentrations of ammonia and potassium from the reverse osmosis effluent of anaerobic-digested wastewater by fixed-bed ion exchange. The elution and uptake behavior of ammonium and potassium in the fixed bed were studied. Both batch desorption tests and on-column regeneration were conducted to develop an optimum regeneration condition compatible with the wastewater requirements. The effectiveness of ammonium elution increased with increasing alkaline concentration. The increase of salt dose significantly enhanced the ammonium maximum in the elution solution. Complete ammonium elution was achieved in 6 bed volumes (BV) when the alkaline and salt concentrations were respectively 0.1 mol/L and 18.6 g/L at a flow rate of 2.5-3.0 BV/hr. Due to the higher affinity of potassium with natural clinoptilolite, complete potassium elution was not achieved in all cases.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adsorption
  • Ammonium Compounds / chemistry*
  • Anaerobiosis
  • Manure
  • Potassium / chemistry*
  • Sodium Chloride / chemistry
  • Waste Disposal, Fluid / methods
  • Wastewater / chemistry
  • Water Pollutants, Chemical / chemistry*
  • Zeolites / chemistry*


  • Ammonium Compounds
  • Manure
  • Waste Water
  • Water Pollutants, Chemical
  • clinoptilolite
  • Zeolites
  • Sodium Chloride
  • Potassium