Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Environmental Engineering (MSEnE)

Degree Level



Civil Engineering


Wen Zhang

Committee Member

James Young

Second Committee Member

Findlay Edwards


Applied sciences, Anaerobic toxicity assessment, Ata, Bmp, Gas production curve, Toxicity, Waste water treatment


Anaerobic digestion has been widely used for wastewater treatment for decades. Several Anaerobic Toxicity tests have been developed to screen wastewater for toxicity and assess the treatability of such toxicants. However, past research and reviews on Biochemical Methane Potential (BMP) test and Anaerobic Toxicity Assay (ATA) were considered in this study.

The experimental tests included ammonium-nitrogen and sodium chloride toxicity tests with varied concentration and solid retention time. These tests were designed to demonstrate the impact of ammonia- nitrogen and sodium chloride on the biological degradation process. The anaerobic test set-up includes bench-scale test reactors and respirometers used for measuring gas production volume and rate.

The experimental data using the gas production volumes and rates were plotted and analyzed. The hourly rate of gas production significantly decreases before the daily production volume decreases. Also, the gas production volume curves showed little or no toxicity when the gas production rates showed toxicity and acclimation.

In conclusion, the hourly production rate curves will indicate toxicity faster and extensively than the cumulative daily production volume curves, thereby reducing testing time.