The phosphorus removal process was studied in a bench-scale plant for a period of 300 days. The process was observed to depend greatly on two parameters: the amount of volatile fatty acid (VFA) taken up in the anaerobic stage and sludge age. For a given sludge age, phosphorus release versus VFA uptake in the anaerobic stage could be fitted to a straight line, while phosphorus uptake in the non-anaerobic stages fitted a logarithmic curve. Thus, phosphorus removal occurred within a limited VFA uptake range. The range width and the phosphorus removal capacity varied with sludge age.

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