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Diagnostics and management of nitrous oxide production and emission during biological wastewater treatment


Atmospheric concentrations of nitrous oxide (N2O), an important greenhouse gas with ozone destroying properties, are increasing at alarming rates. Emissions of N2O from wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) are of growing concern. Studies on which microbial mechanisms produce N2O, and how these are controlled by environmental conditions are in their infancy. The results of this project will first and foremost improve our fundamental understanding of the mechanisms and regulation of N2O production during biological wastewater treatment by using a combination of biogeochemical (including stable isotope based (15N, 18O) methods) and molecular ecological approaches (including omic methods). Combined with on-line sensor measurements at lab-scale and pilot-scale, and mathematical modeling, this will provide detailed, mechanistically-founded insight to how we can predict and control N2O emissions, so that effective management strategies can be derived to ensure that WWTPs control their nitrogen (N) load to both the atmosphere and the aquatic environment.

Funded by

  The Danish Council for Independent Research | Technology and Production Sciences (FTP)