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This is an Open Access book chapter distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Licence (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0), which permits copying and redistribution for non-commercial purposes with no derivatives, provided the original work is properly cited (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/). This does not affect the rights licensed or assigned from any third party in this book. The chapter is from the book Assessment of Treatment Plant Performance and Water Quality Data: A Guide for Students, Researchers and Practitioners, Marcos von Sperling, Matthew E. Verbyla and Sílvia M. A. C. Oliveira (Authors).

In this chapter, we present an argument for why you should determine kinetic coefficients for the decay or removal of various constituents of concern in a water or wastewater treatment reactor, as these coefficients may be useful to other researchers or practitioners designing new systems or undertaking similar studies. We describe the main reaction orders (0, 1, and 2), show you how to derive them, and give an emphasis on the use of first-order reactions. We cover the determination of reaction coefficients based on batch experiments, under steady-state and dynamic conditions, and we provide some precautions about the estimation of reaction rate coefficients for continuous-flow reactors, due to the impact of hydraulic efficiency on these estimates. We demonstrate the need to characterize the hydraulics of continuous-flow reactors and provide some examples using the idealized plug-flow model, the idealized complete-mix model, the plug-flow model with dispersion, and the apparent tanks-in-series model for representing reactor hydraulics.

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