Ammonia recovery from high strength agro industry effluents

M. Altinbas*, I. Ozturk, A. F. Aydin

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of the study was to investigate ammonia recovery from high strength agro industry effluents involving significant amounts of ammonia, by applying magnesium ammonium phosphate (MAP) precipitation technology. Two types of industrial effluents have been tested in the study. The first plant was an opium alkaloid processing industry and the second one was a baker's yeast industry. High chemical oxygen demand (COD), total Kjeldahl nitrogen (TKN) and unacceptable dark brown color characterized effluents from both industries. Effluents from the biologically treated opium alkaloid and baker's yeast industries were both applied at the stoichiometric ratio (Mg:NH4:PO4=1:1:1) and above the stoichiometric ratio (Mg:NH4:PO4=1.1:1:1.1) to MAP precipitation. NH4 removals of 61-80% were achieved at the pH of 9.2 at the stoichiometric ratio, whereas 83% NH4 removal was obtained at the pH of 9.2 above the stoichiometric ratio. Experimental studies performed on both anaerobically and/or aerobically treated baker's yeast opium alkaloid industry effluents have clearly indicated that MAP precipitation was an appropriate treatment option for NH4 removal or struvite recovery from high ammonia content agro industry effluents. Additional ammonia recovery studies were conducted on ozonated and Fenton's oxidation applied effluents and these have also indicated that the amounts of struvite and the quality of MAP precipitate was increased significantly. In this framework, MAP sludge recovered from combined biological and Fenton's oxidation treatment effluents were considered as a more valuable slow release fertilizer for agricultural use.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)189-196
Number of pages8
JournalWater Science and Technology
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 2002


  • Agro industry
  • Ammonia recovery
  • Fertilizer
  • Magnesium-Ammonium-Phosphate (MAP)
  • Precipitation


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