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  Global Journal of Environmental Science and Technology 2012, 2: 1
  Review Article
Study of extracellular polymeric substances on the formation of fouling in membrane bioreactors
  Yu-Tzu Huang, Tsung-Han Huang  
Department of Bioenvironmental Engineering and R&D Center for Membrane Technology, Chung Yuan Christian University, Chung-Li 32023 Taiwan
  Membrane bioreactors (MBRs) are considered as a potentially sound alternative to traditional activated sludge for industrial and municipal wastewater treatment. However, the wider application of MBRs is mainly restricted due to the unavoidable phenomena of fouling formation on the membranes surface. The extracellular polymeric substances (EPS) secreted by bacteria are mainly responsible for development of biofilm or biofouling in a biological process. The different operational conditions of MBR and the characteristics of wastewater and biomass are affecting the potency of fouling in MBR. Many investigations were carried out to identify the constituents of EPS and to study their characteristics and their role in formation of fouling. This review outlines some important finding with regard to the identification of foulant composition (including EPS extraction and analysis) and their role in fouling formation mechanism. The factors affecting foiling, mechanisms of fouling, role of EPS in fouling, and extraction and analysis methods of EPS are discussed in detail. The standardization of suitable extraction and analytical method for identification of complex composition of EPS will be the essential step for future research.
  MBR; Protein; Carbohydrate; EPS; Extraction methods; Membrane fouling  

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