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First Author: Muhammad Ashfaq

In this study, the occurrence and fate of 49 pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) were investigated in an anaerobic-anoxic-oxic (A2/O) wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) for seven consecutive days using 24-h composite sampling technique. Special emphasis was placed to understand the distribution of PPCPs in dissolved and adsorbed phase, and to evaluate PPCP fate in different treatment units. Among the 49 PPCPs, 40 PPCPs in influent, 36 in effluent, 29 in sludge and 23 in suspended solids were detected at least once during sampling. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and a stimulant were predominant PPCPs in influent whereas antibiotics were predominant in sludge, effluent and suspended solids. Removal efficiencies from the aqueous phase based on the dissolved PPCPs showed variable contribution in removing different PPCPs under screen and grit chamber, anaerobic treatment, anoxic treatment, oxic treatment and sedimentation-UV treatments, with the highest removal percentage by anaerobic process in terms of both individual and overall treatment. Mass load analysis showed that 352 g PPCPs enter the WWTP daily while 14.5 g and 58.1 g were discharged through effluent and excess sludge to the receiving sea water and soil applications, respectively. Mass balance analysis based on both aqueous and suspended PPCPs showed 280g (79.4%) mass of influent PPCPs was lost along the wastewater treatment processes, mainly due to degradation/transformation. 

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Page Number: 655-667
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PubYear: 2017
Volume: 123
Publication Name: Water Research
The full text link: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0043135417305870