The removal of pharmaceuticals from wastewater is a topic of growing concern. This presentation investigates the removal of pharmaceuticals at the source as well as end-of-pipe treatment using ozonation, a proven technique to remove pharmaceuticals. Pilot research was performed using a coarse filter, fine filter, ozone and UV treatment at the SKB hospital in Winterswijk, the Netherlands. At the municipal wastewater treatment plant of Aarle Rixtel, the Netherlands the pilot treatment consisted of ozone followed by a moving bed biofilm reactor (MBBR). The ozone dosage was regulated based on the measured UV254 absorbance in the inflow of the pilot. The majority of the pharmaceuticals was effectively removed with an average removal of more than 80% at the pilot. The wastewater after ozonation showed increased biodegradability. The pharmaceutical removal averaged more than 98% for the full wastewater treatment including post-treatment with ozone.
In the full presentation the results will be presented in further detail, including ozone dosages, medicine removals and toxicity assays. Furthermore, the comparison will be made between the benefits of treatment at the source of end-of-pipe for the removal of pharmaceuticals from wastewater and their feasibility.