The purpose of this study was to investigate an effective treatment system which can be applicable to treat opium alkaloid industry (OAI) effluents characterised with high COD, TKN, dark color and non-biodegradable organic pollutants. In the first phase of the study, lab-scale anaerobic (UASBR) + aerobic (SBR) treatability studies were carried out on opium processing industry effluents. Effluent CODs from the two staged biological treatment system were relatively high (∼700 mgl−1) and additional post treatment was required. Physico-chemical treatability studies previously carried out on the effluent of opium alkaloid wastewater treatment plant, were not effective in removing residual COD and color. In the second phase of the study, the refractory organics causing higher inert COD values in the SBR effluent were additionally treated by using Fenton's Oxidation. The batch tests were performed to determine the optimum operating conditions including pH, H2O2 dosage, molar ratio of Fe2+/H2O2 and reaction time. It was found that removal efficiencies of COD and color for 30 minutes reaction time were about 90% and 95%, respectively. The ratio of H2O2/FeSO4 was determined as 200 mgl−1/600 mgl−1 for the optimum oxidation and coagulation process at pH 4. Experimental results of the present study have clearly indicated that the Fenton's oxidation technology is capable to treat almost all parts of the organics which consist of both soluble initial and microbial inert fractions of COD for opium alkaloid industry effluents. Effluents from the Fenton's Oxidation process can satisfy effluent standards for COD and color in general.

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