Biosorption of uranium by residual biomass from The Old Bushmill's Distillery Co. Ltd., Bushmills, Co. Antrim, Northern Ireland, following exposure to short and intense electric pulses has been examined. The biomass was prepared from the distillery spent wash and consisted of non-viable yeast and bacterial cells. As shown previously, untreated biomass had a maximum biosorption capacity of 170 mg uranium/g dry weight biomass. When biosorption reactions were placed between two electrodes and exposed to electric pulses with field strengths ranging from 1.25-3.25 kV/cm at a capacitance of 25 mu F, biosorption increased from 170 mg of uranium to 275 mg uranium/g dry weight biomass. The data were obtained from biosorption isotherm analyses and taken as the degree of biosorption at residual uranium concentrations of 3 mM. In addition, when the capacitance of the electric pulses increased from 0.25 mu F to 25 mu F at a fixed pulse field strength the degree of biosorption increased from 210 mg uranium to 240 mg uranium/g dry weight biomass. The results suggest that application of short and intense electric pulses to biosorption reactions may play an important role in enhancing microbial biosorption of toxic metals/radionuclides from waste water streams.
|Publication status||Published - Jan 1998|