Effects of concentration and gas flow rate on the removal of gas-phase toluene and xylene mixture in a compost biofilter

Eldon R. Rene, Natalia Sergienko, Torsha Goswami, M. Estefanía López, Gopalakrishnan Kumar, Ganesh D. Saratale, Perumal Venkatachalam, K. Pakshirajan, T. Swaminathan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of this work was to study the performance of a compost/ceramic bead biofilter (6:4 v/v) for the removal of gas-phase toluene and xylene at different inlet loading rates (ILR). The inlet toluene (or) xylene concentrations were varied from 0.1 to 1.5 g m−3, at gas flow rates of 0.024, 0.048 and 0.072 m3 h−1, respectively, corresponding to total ILR varying between 7 and 213 g m−3 h−1. Although there was mutual inhibition, xylene removal was severely inhibited by the presence of toluene than toluene removal by the presence of xylene. The biofilter was also exposed to transient variations such as prolonged periods of shutdown (30 days) and shock loads to envisage the response and recuperating ability of the biofilter. The maximum elimination capacity (EC) for toluene and xylene were 29.2 and 16.4 g m−3 h−1, respectively, at inlet loads of 53.8 and 43.7 g m−3 h−1.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)28-35
Number of pages8
JournalBioresource technology
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Jan

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This experimental work was supported by the research grants from the Department of Chemical Engineering , Indian Institute of Technology Madras. The authors also extend their sincere thanks to Mr. Z. Aslam Basha (IIT Madras) for his analytical help. MEL thanks UDC, Spain for providing financial support during her PhD. The authors thank UNESCO-IHE (Delft, The Netherlands) for providing software and infrastructural support to carry out MINITAB based statistics. Appendix A

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 Elsevier Ltd

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Bioengineering
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Waste Management and Disposal


Dive into the research topics of 'Effects of concentration and gas flow rate on the removal of gas-phase toluene and xylene mixture in a compost biofilter'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this