The role of mineral surface hydrophobicity in attachment to activated sludge flocs was investigated. Fluorite and quartz particles of similar granulometry were hydrophobized by adsorbing sodium oleate and dodecylamine chloride, respectively. Mineral hydrophobicity was assessed by flotation expriments. The attachment of particles to microbial flocs was determined by optical microscopy. The results indicate that hydrophobized particles are always better incorporated within activated sludge flocs than non-coated particles. A comparison with Aquatal particles used as sludge ballast reveals that hydrophobized minerals are associated with microbial flocs to the same extent.

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