This paper presents effects of dispersion on predicting longitudinal ammonia concentration profiles in activated sludge bioreactor located at “Wschod” WWTP in Gdansk. The aim of this study was to use the one-dimensional advection-dispersion Equation (ADE) to simulate the flow conditions (based on the inert tracer concentrations in selected points) and longitudinal profile of reactive pollutant (based on the ammonia concentration profiles in selected points). The simulation results were compared with the predictions obtained using a traditional “tanks-in-series” (TIS) approach, commonly used in designing biological reactors. The use of dispersion coefficient calculated from an empirical formula resulted in substantial differences in the tracer concentration distributions in two sampling points in the bioreactor. Simulations using the one-dimensional ADE and TIS model, with the nitrification rate incorporated as the source term, revealed that the hydraulic model plays a minor role compared to the biochemical transformations in predicting the longitudinal ammonia concentration profiles.

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