This paper reports on a pilot trial of a novel MBR developed with coarse-pore membrane module by the authors. The plant was operated for 370 days with up to 7 m3/d raw saline sewage after 3-mm screening. The plant performed successfully without membrane fouling for 270 days except an accidental power source failure for 30 h, during which membrane was fouled under no aeration and mixing condition. EPS increases in both the reactor and the bio-cake on the membrane surface explained this fouling. The average TSS, COD and TKN removal efficiency were 92, 90, and 93%, respectively, under a high effective permeate flux of 4.8 m/d and a low air-to-water ratio of 15.

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