Differences between biological denitrification and reverse osmosis

Differences between biological denitrification and reverse osmosis technology

Main differences between the innovative biological denitrification technology used in BIOBOX Nitrates and other technologies available on the market for nitrate removal in potable water and wastewater.

There are several technologies on the market for the removal of high nitrate concentrations in groundwater and surface water, separation technologies (reverse osmosis, anionic resins and electrodialysis) and transformation technologies (catalytic removal and biological denitrification).

Available technologies: nitrate removal

The most commonly used traditional technology is reverse osmosis. This technology purifies water by removing suspended particles by passing it through semi-permeable membranes. Several issues arise in the process, which we will explain in more detail in this article: water losses, high operating and investment costs, and rejections of concentrated contaminants, which are difficult to manage.

On the other hand, we have biological denitrification, which would be within the separation technologies. It is a new and environmentally friendly technology for the elimination of pollutants such as nitrates. This technique consists of reproducing the denitrification process that occurs in nature thanks to a family of bacteria that naturally eliminate nitrates from water, transforming them into nitrogen gas that is harmless to nature.

Water Bioremediation. What is it?

In other words, bioremediation is a natural process that uses living organisms (heterotrophic bacteria) to eliminate specific contaminants present in soil, water or air. The bacteria feed on what to us is a pollutant, which makes it a self-sustaining and natural process.

The concept of bioremediation is widely known and used in wastewater. However, this solution has also proven to be one of the most advanced, selective and cost-effective processes for potable water treatment.

BIOBOX Nitratos integrates the market leading biological denitrification technology called Puremust-sn®. It is based on the natural action of group 1 bacteria (safe and harmless to humans, similar to those found in yogurt).

Differences between water transformation and water separation technologies

nitrate removal: bioremediation vs reverse osmosis

The main difference between the two is that while separation technologies generate a concentration of rejects that require specific treatment, biological denitrification does not displace nitrates or retain them in a membrane, but eliminates them completely, thus avoiding polluting rejects.

In addition, bioremediation does not require the use of chemicals, high temperatures or pressures, so operating and investment costs are much lower. The technology is based on the natural action of bacteria, making it a sustainable process that does not require high energy consumption.

BIOBOXWATER S.L. is a company that, using its own innovative technology, designs, manufactures and starts up prefabricated compact biological denitrification plants, 100% automated for the treatment of potable water, wastewater or water reuse.

Its specialty is to provide the customer with the solution he needs, specially designed for small and medium flow rates. BIOBOX’s philosophy is based on making available to all types of companies advanced technology whose alternatives are only available to large plants and investors.

The BIOBOX Nitrates (Puremust-SN®) technology has been tested and proven over the years in different success stories around the world. In addition, it has been certified by the official body SGS to remove up to 1400 mg/l of nitrates in drinking water or osmosis rejects, four times more than what has been achieved so far.

BIOBOX Nitrates (Puremust-SN®) is based on the elimination of nitrates contained in water, by means of a heterotrophic biological process, transforming nitrates into nitrogen gas. The bacteria offered by BIOBOX Nitrates® technology are natural, safe according to regulations and harmless to health (Group 1).

All BIOBOX Nitrates plants have common components and a design basis made by water treatment experts.

Advantages of BIOBOX technology for nitrate removal in water

A great advantage is that the equipment is 100% automated and can be visualized and controlled in real time from any device with an internet connection, that is, there is no need for continuous operating personnel in the plant.

They are completely autonomous systems in which key parameters are constantly monitored. In addition, they have an alert system that notifies the operating personnel of any need.

This equipment is usually offered in container or skid format to occupy as little space as possible, thus reducing the investment costs of the solution as a whole. In addition, being compact plants, execution and start-up times are minimized, with standard manufacturing cycles of 6 to 10 weeks.

In summary, the BIOBOX Nitrates solution is the most competitive alternative on the market for eliminating nitrates in small and medium flows, both from a technical and economic point of view:

  • No contaminant rejects
  • Technology certified by SGS and accepted by the health authorities.
  • No water waste
  • Reduced hydraulic retention time (HRT)
  • Less space required
  • Lower investment costs
  • Operating cost below 0.15 USD/m3
  • Operates with a stoichiometric dose of carbon
  • 100% automated and remote controlled plant
  • Able to work from 3ºC to 39ºC of water
  • Environmentally friendly technology, respectful of the environment
  • Accessible to all types of companies and populations
  • Lower cost per m3
  • Reduced carbon footprint (-CO2) as it does not depend on high energy yields.
  • Controlled natural process
  • All process guarantees

This article has been published in the specialized magazine Link to the article