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Environmental Biotechnology

Environmental Biotechnology
type: Lecture
chair: Water Chemistry and Water Technology
semester: WS
place: see German page

see German page


A. Tiehm

sws: 2
lv-no.: 22614

Important Dates

  • For further information please have a look at the German page!


The microbial environmental processes and biotechnological applications will be presented. Biological waste water and sewage sludge treatment, groundwater and soil bioremediation, resource protection, and drinking water treatment are covered. The microbiological transformation pathways and limiting boundary conditions will be discussed. Monitoring parameters and factors controlling process efficiency are discussed based on microbial thermodynamics and degradation capabilities, and illustrated by field applications.

lecture notes (password-protected): Kap. 1, Kap. 2, Kap. 3, Kap. 4, Kap. 5, Kap. 6, Kap. 7, Kap. 8, Kap. 9, Kap. 10


  • Introduction Environmental Biotechnology:
    Recommended textbooks, microorganisms in the environment, microbial physiology, nutrients, trace elements, biodegradability tests

  • Metabolism of Microorganisms:
    Substrates, electron acceptors, co-metabolism, thermodynamics, biomass formation, bioavailability, toxicity, growth kinetics

  • Biological Waste Water Treatment:
    Elimination of organic carbon, nitrification, denitrifikation, bio-phosphorus-removal; sum parameters in waste water treatment; activated sludge process (aerobic/anaerobic), trickling filters, constructed wetlands, membrane bioreactors

  • Biological Sewage Sludge Treatment:
    Aerobic/anaerobic stabilisation; methane formation; kinetics, thermodynamics and microbial community; sludge disintegration; sludge utilisation

  • Microbial Degradation of Xenobiotics:
    Tar oil pollutanst: polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH), mono-aromatic hydrocarbons (BTEX), heterocyclic compounds; chlorinated pollutants: chloroethenes, chlorophenols; degradation/persistence of other synthetic compounds (e.g. pharmaceuticals, surfactants)

  • Bioremediation of groundwater and contaminated soil:
    Microbial communities and geohydrochemistry at contaminated sites; Natural Attenuation; intrinsic biodegradation; engineered bioremediation: in-situ-remediation, bioreactors, bioaugmentation

  • Waste Water Reuse and Aquifer Recharge:
    Pollutant transport and degradation under unsaturated soil conditions; microbial profiles; elimination of pathogens

  • Pesticides:
    Degradability; occurrence in the environment

  • Treatment of Drinking Water:
    Bank filtration; Fe/Mn-Removal; nitrate removal

  • Monitoring and Control of Biotechnological Processes:
    Detection and enumeration of microorganisms; polymerase-chain-reaction (PCR) and other advanced molecular biological apporches; metabolite formation; ecotoxicity; genotoxicity; isotopic fractionation

Please notice: Lecture and lecture notes in German language