Water pollution causes substantial damage to the environment and to human health, and the current methods to treat pollution suffer from high cost and low efficiency, resulting in increased environmental damages. Using genetic modification and functional selection, we developed a novel biosorbent from Genetically Engineered Bacillus subtilis (GEBS) cells. At a ratio of biosorbent to direct blue dye of about 1:1.25 in a water solution, the dye pigments can be completely adsorbed in 40 s, decreasing COD to zero. Contrary to other biosorbents, ions such as Fe2+ and Cu2+ have significant advantages in terms of the adsorbing efficiency. The GEBS biomass can therefore capture both organics and ions from wastewater simultaneously and achieve co-precipitation in 2–10 min, which are features critical for practical applications of wastewater treatment. In addition, we used six different eluting solutions to regenerate used biomass, all resulting in renewed, highly efficient color and COD elimination capacities, with the best elution solution being NaHCO3 and Na2CO3. For practical applications, we showed a high COD elimination rate when using the GEBS biomass to treat raw water from textile enterprises, paper mill, and petrochemical industries. Compared with currently available adsorbing agents, the GEBS cells can adsorb organic and ion waste much faster and with much higher efficiency, can be regenerated and recycled efficiently, and may have broad applications in treating organic water pollution.
Journal of Environmental Management – Elsevier
Published: Sep 15, 2015
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