Homogeneously and heterogeneously structured biofilm models for wastewater treatment

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Article number127763
Journal / PublicationBioresource Technology
Online published12 Aug 2022
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2022


Biofilm, a layer comprising extracellular polymeric substances, is the platform where the embedded living cells degrade the substances in the wastewaters. Biofilm models have been developed as part of the comprehensive models for the wastewater treatment process. This review summarizes the biofilm models applied in contemporary literature based on the spatial dimensions adopted for model build-up. The most commonly applied biofilm models are null-dimensional, considering the biofilm active biomass for the substrate sink's biological reaction. The one-dimensional, multi-species models are the second standard models for contemporary studies, providing transport and reaction resistances of substrates in the biofilm matrix and the interactions of competing or collaborating strains in the biofilm. The structural homogeneity of the biofilm challenges the validity of the uniformly structured models, highlighting the need to re-examine the validity of the uniformly structured models. The challenges and prospects of biofilm model developments and applications are outlined.

Research Area(s)

  • Biofilm model, Interior structure, Performance, Spatial dimension