Mechanistic insights into promoted dewaterability, drying behaviors and methane-producing potential of waste activated sludge by Fe2+-activated persulfate oxidation

Yujie Tan, Ruiliang Zhang, Xueqin Lu, Chengxin Niu, Guangyin Zhen, Gopalakrishnan Kumar, Youcai Zhao

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6 Citations (Scopus)


Sludge management represents a critical challenge because of complex compositions and poor dewaterability. Fe2+-activated persulfate oxidation (Fe2+/S2O82−) is an effective, and widely investigated method for enhancing sludge dewatering. However, the potential effects of Fe2+/S2O82− on sludge drying efficiency, anaerobic biodegradation behaviors and potential recycling of sludge residua are not yet well-known. In this study, a new sludge disposal route (step i: enhanced dewatering via Fe2+/S2O82−, and step ii: drying-incineration or anaerobic digestion) was proposed and appraised comprehensively. Results showed that Fe2+/S2O82− oxidation destroyed extracellular polymeric substances, lysed sludge cells and enhanced the dewaterability greatly. Capillary suction time and mechanical filtration time at 2.0/1.6 mmol-Fe2+/S2O82−/g-VS decreased by 88.0% and 79.6%, respectively. Moreover, 89.8% of micro-pollutants (e.g., methylbenzene, ethylbenzene, p-m-xylene and o-xylene) in sludge were removed. Besides, the pretreatment was able to alter sludge drying behaviors and methane-producing potential. Pretreated sludge exhibited faster drying rate and shorter lag-time for methane production. Incineration residua of dewatered sludge could be re-coupled with S2O82− as the conditioner to enhance sludge dewaterability, thereby reducing the chemical input and disposal cost. This study provides a novel, self-sustainable strategy for sludge management, reutilization and final safe disposal.

Original languageEnglish
Article number113429
JournalJournal of Environmental Management
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Nov 15

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was sponsored by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 51908217 and 51808226 ), Professor of Special Appointment (Eastern Scholar) at Shanghai Institutions of Higher Learning (No. TP2017041 ), the Science & Technology Innovation Action Plan of Shanghai (No. 20230742100 and 21230714000 ), the Shanghai Yangfan Program (No. 19YF1414000), the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities , Shanghai Engineering Research Center of Biotransformation of Organic Solid Waste ( SERC2020A02 , and SERC2020B02 ), and Shanghai Institute of Pollution Control and Ecological Security .

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Elsevier Ltd

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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