Removal performances of organic micropollutants by conventional activated sludge (CAS) and aerobic granular sludge (AGS) were investigated at a full-scale wastewater treatment plant. Lab-scale kinetic experiments were performed to assess the micropollutant transformation rates under oxic and anoxic conditions. Transformation rates were used to model the micropollutant removal in the full-scale processes. Metagenomic sequencing was used to compare the microbial communities and antimicrobial resistance genes of the CAS and AGS systems. Higher transformation ability was observed for CAS compared to AGS for most compounds, both at the full-scale plant and in the complementary batch experiments. Oxic conditions supported the transformation of several micropollutants with faster and/or comparable rates compared to anoxic conditions. The estimated transformation rates from batch experiments adequately predicted the removal for most micropollutants in the full-scale processes. While the compositions in microbial communities differed between AGS and CAS, the full-scale biological reactors shared similar resistome profiles. Even though granular biomass showed lower potential for micropollutant transformation, AGS systems had somewhat higher gene cluster diversity compared to CAS, which could be related to a higher functional diversity. Micropollutant exposure to biomass or mass transfer limitations, therefore played more important roles in the observed differences in OMP removal.
- Oceanografi, hydrologi och vattenresurser (10509)