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Model-based sensitivity analysis of a fluidised-bed bioreactor for mercury uptake by immobilised Pseudomonas putida cells

Gheorghe Maria, Ionela Luta, and Cristina Maria

Chemical & Biochemical Engineering Department, University Politehnica of Bucharest, Polizu 1, Bucharest, 011061, Romania



Abstract: A model-based sensitivity analysis was performed in order to evaluate the importance of the individual operating parameters of a three-phase fluidised-bed biological reactor used for removing mercury ions from wastewater. The parameters analysed involve the immobilised biomass load (bacteria P. putida) on alginate beads, particle size, inlet flow-rate, mercury ion loads in the fed wastewater, and the solid fraction in the reactor. Predictions were generated by using pseudo-first-order, Michaelis-Menten, or pseudo-Haldane kinetic models. The results highlight the major influence of the biomass/solid load and of the liquid residence time on the reactor efficiency. Also, the resultant significant differences in the model predictions underline the importance of using a more accurate kinetic model for process design and control purposes.

Keywords: mercury uptake by P. putida – fluidised-bed biological reactor – sensitivity analysis – kinetic model simplification

Full paper is available at

DOI: 10.2478/s11696-013-0403-z


Chemical Papers 67 (11) 1364–1375 (2013)

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