Biofilm development onto polypropylene particles (<4 mm) was studied in a laboratory-scale down flow anaerobic fluidised bed reactor. The reactor was fed with a synthetic solution containing sucrose and nutrients, and operated at 35°C during 65 days at 44% bed expansion rate and 36 h HRT. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) monitored the biofilm development. Initial adhesion occurred within the first 6 hours and after day 44 biofilm structure was complete. The presence of attached cells morphologically similar to Methanotrix bacilli and Methanosarcina sp. was observed by Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM). The biofilm and the carrier surface roughness were measured by atomic force microscopy (AFM) and yielded 9.1 and 75 nm respectively. Results also showed good correlation between the SEM characterisation and the conventional anaerobic reactor parameters.

This content is only available as a PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.