An exploratory study on seawater-catalysed urine phosphorus recovery (SUPR)

Ji Dai, Wen Tao Tang, Yi Se Zheng, Hamish Mackey, Ho Kwong Chui, Mark C M van Loosdrecht, Guang Hao Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

27 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Phosphorus (P) is a crucial and non-renewable resource, while it is excessively discharged via sewage, significant amounts originating from human urine. Recovery of P from source-separated urine presents an opportunity not only to recover this precious resource but also to improve downstream sewage treatment works. This paper proposes a simple and economic method to recover urine derived P by using seawater as a low-cost precipitant to form struvite, as Hong Kong has practised seawater toilet flushing as an alternative water resource since 1958. Chemical reactions, process conditions and precipitate composition for P precipitation in urine have been investigated to develop this new urine P recovery approach. This study concluded that ureolysis extent in a urine-seawater mixture determines the reaction pH that in turn influences the P recovery efficiency significantly; 98% of urine P can precipitate with seawater within 10min when 40-75% of the urea in urine is ureolysed; the urine to seawater ratio alters the composition of the precipitates. The P content in the precipitates was found to be more than 9% when the urine fraction was 40% or higher. Magnesium ammonium phosphate (MAP) was confirmed to be the predominant component of the precipitates.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)75-84
Number of pages10
JournalWater Research
Volume66
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2014
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Seawater
urine
Phosphorus
Precipitates
phosphorus
seawater
Recovery
Sewage treatment
Sewage
Chemical analysis
Water resources
Urea
Magnesium
Chemical reactions
Phosphates
struvite
nonrenewable resource
Economics
flushing
sewage treatment

Keywords

  • Phosphorus recovery
  • Precipitation
  • Seawater
  • Ureolysis
  • Urine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecological Modelling
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution

Cite this

Dai, J., Tang, W. T., Zheng, Y. S., Mackey, H., Chui, H. K., van Loosdrecht, M. C. M., & Chen, G. H. (2014). An exploratory study on seawater-catalysed urine phosphorus recovery (SUPR). Water Research, 66, 75-84. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.watres.2014.08.008

An exploratory study on seawater-catalysed urine phosphorus recovery (SUPR). / Dai, Ji; Tang, Wen Tao; Zheng, Yi Se; Mackey, Hamish; Chui, Ho Kwong; van Loosdrecht, Mark C M; Chen, Guang Hao.

In: Water Research, Vol. 66, 01.12.2014, p. 75-84.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Dai, J, Tang, WT, Zheng, YS, Mackey, H, Chui, HK, van Loosdrecht, MCM & Chen, GH 2014, 'An exploratory study on seawater-catalysed urine phosphorus recovery (SUPR)', Water Research, vol. 66, pp. 75-84. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.watres.2014.08.008
Dai, Ji ; Tang, Wen Tao ; Zheng, Yi Se ; Mackey, Hamish ; Chui, Ho Kwong ; van Loosdrecht, Mark C M ; Chen, Guang Hao. / An exploratory study on seawater-catalysed urine phosphorus recovery (SUPR). In: Water Research. 2014 ; Vol. 66. pp. 75-84.
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