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Non conventional wastewater treatment systems composed by biological, physical and chemical reactors in series: development and optimization

Grant number: 03/10146-0
Support Opportunities:PRONEX Research - Thematic Grants
Duration: January 01, 2005 - May 31, 2008
Field of knowledge:Engineering - Sanitary Engineering - Water Supply and Wastewater Treatment
Convênio/Acordo: CNPq - Pronex
Principal Investigator:José Roberto Campos
Grantee:José Roberto Campos
Host Institution: Escola de Engenharia de São Carlos (EESC). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Carlos , SP, Brazil


The team that hereby submits this project participated previously of the activities of the Institution, that coordinated the PRONEX program (1998 a 2003), in which researchers from the Federal Universities of Pernambuco (PE), Campina Grande (Pb) and Rio Grande do Norte (RN), (UFPE, UFPb and UFRN) were also included. In the first PRONEX edital, funds around R$ 2.000.000,00 were asked for, and only R$ 1.200.000,00 was granted. Despite this reduction the Nucleous Team generated up to the present (1998 to mid-2003): 44 PhD students, 70 Msc students, 25 trainees, 71 articles published in periodicals, 8 books, 60 book chapters and 173 articles in conference proceedings; besides lectures, courses, partnerships, committee participations and so on. It is important to say that the total production of articles in periodicals (national and international) reached an average of about 5 per researcher, in this period. These numbers prove that the team was seriously dedicated to its objectives and responsibilities. The teams were committed, with the original program, to complete the following objectives; a) construction of the main units for wastewater treatment of the Campus - USP, São Carlos, including biological, chemical and disinfection processes; b) implantation, at EESC - USP, of facilities to use these resources to create a Wastewater Treatment Plant Operator School (course, with 50% of "needing youth") - in the future, after having complementary facilities (with the support of USP, CNPq, FAPESP, etc.); c) development, at USP, of researches in full scale (and pilot scale also), involving more complex technologies (focusing on: kinethics, hydrodynamics, UV and ozone disinfection, microbiology, membranes, etc); d) development of research in the other participating universities (UFPE, UFPb and UFRN) competible to the ones implanted at EESC -USP, however respecting the regional circumstances; e) use of the facilities implanted in all four universities, for essays, research, teaching and extension. All of the primordial objectives will be completed, and it can be realized that the consolidation of the teams from the four universities resulted in effectiveness and productivity. The budget reduction, before mentioned, resulted in a relative loss in the quality of the implanted facilities, despite an expressive support from the Dean's Office from the São Paulo University. The situation, at this moment, is critical. Due to the limitation of resources, the students have to dedicate to parallel activities such as sludge handling, grading and tank cleaning, etc.; and furthermore, with the end of the available resources (from the previous edital), improvisions have started for the operation and maintainance of full scale reactors and pilot or batch facilities. Nowadays, the necessity to continue some sub-projects and the execution of complements and installations implanted -for a cycle to be completed -, in the series of research concluded and underway is clear. Due to the new system of PRONEX, this proposal evolves only the São Paulo University -EESC -USP team. There will be eight researchers (all with PQ -CNPq: 2 with 1A level, 2 with 2A, 3 with 2B and 1 with 3C) and the researches evolve themes related to the use of UASB -"Up flow Anaerobic Sludge Blanket Reactors", expanded bed, sequencing batch reactors, biological reactors with membranes, fixed bed, etc, focusing anaerobic and aerobic processes (organic matter removal, nitrification and desnitrification. In addition, disinfection by ultraviolet radiation and ozone, and dissolved air flotation followed by filtration is also involved. Parts of these researches evolve secondary treatment and part terciary or advanced treatment (in this case with reuse objectives). With the asked resources it will be possible upgrade the qualitative level of the reactors and data collected, and the implantation of the use of microsensors (to study biofilm) and the DGGE technique (molecular biology). The program at least 12 PhD and 5 Msc and 3 scientific initiation students will also be evolved, and during all 3 years of the program, certainly more students will start to work employing the same research units. (AU)

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