Application of biofiltration to the degradation of hydrogen sulfide in gas effluents

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A laboratory scale bioreactor has been designed and set up in order to degrade hydrogen sulfide from an air stream. The reactor is a vertical column of 7 litre capacity and 1 meter in height. It is divided into three modules and each module is filled with pellets of agricultural residues as packing bed material. The gas stream fed into the reactor through the upper inlet consists of a mixture of hydrogen sulfide and humidified air. The hydrogen sulfide content in the inlet gas stream was increased in stages until the degradation efficiency was below 90%. The parameters to be controlled in order to reach continuous and stable operation were temperature, moisture content and the percentage of the compound to be degraded at the inlet and outlet gas streams (removal or elimination efficiency). When the H2S mass loading rate was between 10 and 40 g m−3h−1, the removal efficiency was greater than 90%. The support material had a good physical performance throughout operation time, which is evidence that this material is suitable for biofiltration purposes.

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