Mechanisms for P removal in a vertical upflow macrophyte system were studied in controlled laboratory columns filled with sand and planted with Phragmites australis. Substrate P removal was shown to increase with flow rate, a parameter which can be enhanced through effluent recirculation. An alternative substrate (leca, light expanded clay aggregate) provided improved equilibrium adsorption characteristics, but uncrushed and within the kinetic constraints of a macrophyte system gave no improvement for P adsorption over sand. Intermittent loading of the sand based macrophyte system permitted control of the P concentration, with lower effluent peak concentrations for increased resting interval (no P inflow). Where P loading was targeted, continuous flow provided the optimum mass removal conditions.

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