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Production of Microbial Flocs Using Laboratory-scale Sequencing Batch Reactors and Tilapia Wastewaters

D.D. Kuhn*1, G.D. Boardman2 and G.J. Flick1
Volume 11, June 2010

1Department of Food Science and Technology
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
Blacksburg, VA 24061 USA

2Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
Blacksburg, VA 24061 USA

*Corresponding Author: davekuhn@vt.edu

Keywords: sequencing batch reactors, SBR, microbial flocs, recirculating systems, tilapia, effluent, carbon supplementation, alternative protein, aquaculture feed

International Journal of Recirculating Aquaculture 11 (2010) 37-54. All Rights Reserved
© Copyright 2010 by Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA USA


Laboratory-scale studies using sequencing batch reactors (SBRs) were conducted to evaluate microbial floc production and treatability of fish effluent from a tilapia farm utilizing recirculating aquaculture systems (RAS). Several trials were conducted, both with and without carbon sucrose supplementation. Results from this project suggest that treatment with carbon supplementation improved nutrient removal from the fish effluent and increased microbial floc production. Successful treatment of effluent using bioreactors could accomplish two primary objectives. The first objective is improving water quality of effluent to maximize water reuse. Secondly, production of microbial flocs is a means of recycling nutrients from the effluent into a useable and alternative protein source for aquaculture diets. Ultimately, this option could offer a sustainable option for the aquaculture industry.