This work investigated the use of submerged anaerobic membrane bioreactors (SAMBRs) in the presence and absence of powdered activated carbon (PAC) for the treatment of genuine textile wastewater. The reactors were operated at 35 °C with an HRT of 24 h and the textile effluent was diluted (1:10) with nutrient solution containing yeast extract as the source of the redox mediation riboflavin. The results showed that although both SAMBRs exhibited an excellent performance, the presence of PAC inside SAMBR-1 enhanced reactor stability and removal efficiency of chemical oxygen demand (COD), volatile fatty acids (VFA), turbidity and color. The median removal efficiencies of COD and color in SAMBR-1 were, 90 and 94% respectively; whereas for SAMBR-2 (without PAC) these values were 79 and 86%, In addition, the median values of turbidity and VFA were 8 NTU and 8 mg/L for SAMBR-1 and 14 NTU and 26 mg/L for SAMBR-2, indicating that the presence of PAC inside SAMBR-1 led to the production of an anaerobic effluent of high quality regarding such parameters.

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