Hèctor Monclús

Hèctor Monclús
Universitat de Girona | UDG · LEQUIA Laboratory of Chemical and Environmental Engineering

PhD

About

52
Publications
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1,296
Citations

Publications

Publications (52)
Article
Decentralized water reuse in cities is a prominent alternative to mainstream top-down models for urban water treatment, which are based on centralized, linear dynamics of resource management. In this sense, Nature-based Solutions (“green” technologies) coupled with advanced technologies (“grey” technologies) constitute a promising approach for fome...
Article
Submerged forward osmosis (FO) is of high interest to treat and concentrate complex streams where cross flow module suffers from limitations such as breakage of fragile compounds, viscosity issue or fouling and clogging limitations. In this study, submerged hollow fiber FO (Sub-HFFO) modules were designed using commercial HFFO membranes. Then, modu...
Article
Full-text available
Coagulation is the main process for removing natural organic matter (NOM), considered to be the major disinfection by-products (DBPs) precursor in drinking water production. In this work, k-means clusters analysis were used to classify influent waters from two different surface drinking water treatment plants (DWTPs) located in the Mediterranean re...
Article
Full-text available
A main reverse osmosis (RO) limitation is the operational costs (including energy filtration costs), which are significantly affected by energy costs and the expense of membrane maintenance. Both costs are affected by influent characteristics, including feedwater temperatures (T), electrical conductivity (EC), and recovery set points. A fuzzy logic...
Article
Drinking water treatment plants (DWTPs) face changes in raw water quality, which affect the formation of disinfection by-products. Several empirical modelling approaches have been reported in the literature, but most of them have been developed with lab-scale data, which may not be representative of real water systems. Therefore, the application of...
Article
Drinking water treatment plants (DWTPs) have to be efficiently managed to produce safe water at all times, independently from variations of influent water quality. Artificial Intelligence techniques like fuzzy inference systems (FIS) can help in consolidating process knowledge accumulated through years of experience and improve the consistency and...
Article
Full-text available
Drinking water production is subject to multiple water quality requirements such as minimizing disinfection byproducts (DBPs) formation, which are highly related to natural organic matter (NOM) content. For water treatment, coagulation is a key process for removing water pollutants and, as such, is widely implemented in drinking water treatment pla...
Article
The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic is, undeniably, a substantial shock to our civilization which has revealed the value of public services that relate to public health. Ensuring a safe and reliable water supply and maintaining water sanitation has become ever more critical during the pandemic. For this reason, researchers and practitioners have promptly...
Article
The management of wastewater systems constitutes a complex problem in the environmental engineering field. The variability and uncertainty of the inflows of wastewater treatment plants involve a real risk of reducing the effectiveness of the treatments and worsen the ecological state of river basins. An adequate reduction of contaminants requires a...
Article
Drinking Water Treatment Plants (DWTPs) face changes in raw water quality and treatment needs to be adjusted to produce the best water quality at the minimum environmental cost. An environmental decision support system (EDSS) was developed for aiding DWTP operators in choosing the adequate permanganate dosing rate in the pre-oxidation step. To this...
Article
Full-text available
A new analytical method for the determination of naproxen, ketoprofen, diclofenac, carbamazepine, and triclosan (TCS) in water samples by liquid chromatography is developed and validated. The method is based on the extraction of the analytes by a polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) rod. The different parameters affecting extraction, such as the addition of...
Article
Full-text available
Biogas production is a growing market and the existing conversion technologies require different biogas quality and characteristics. In pursuance of assisting decision-makers in biogas upgrading an environmental decision support system (EDSS) was developed. Since the field is rapidly progressing, this tool is easily updatable with new data from tec...
Article
Drinking Water Treatment Plants face changes in raw water quality and quantity and the treatment needs to be adjusted accordingly to produce the best water quality at the minimum environmental cost. The amount of data generated along drinking water treatment plants allows developing data-based models like artificial neural networks that are able to...
Article
Full-text available
Alternative processes need to be designed for the treatment of industrial effluents containing pharmaceutical and personal care products to improve their quality, permit the reuse of water for industrial applications and meet the standards set by environmental regulations prior to discharge. This type of effluent is a major source of water pollutio...
Article
Forward osmosis (FO) technology that has been applied to a membrane bioreactor (MBR) is referred to as osmotic MBR (OMBR). The new concept developed in this study aims at retrofitting (partly or fully) existing MBR into OMBR, thus limiting the investment costs, allowing for more flexible and combined operation of MBR and OMBR and to fulfil water qu...
Article
The removal of pharmaceuticals (PhACs) present in urban wastewater by membrane bioreactors (MBRs) followed by reverse osmosis (RO) or nanofiltration (NF) membranes has been frequently addressed in the literature. However, data regarding the removal of their main human metabolites and transformation products (TPs) is still scarce. In this study, the...
Article
Abstract Recently, microbial fuel cells (MFCs) have been integrated with membrane bioreactors (MBRs), either in an internal or an external configuration, for wastewater treatment and energy recovery. In an external configuration, MFCs could be applied for an efficient sludge reduction since they can simultaneously address energy issue and environme...
Article
Wastewater treatment systems (WTSs) have as an objective to efficiently treat the wastewater flows that they receive. Wastewater treatment plants (WWTP) process optimization is generally based on biological process optimization, which is usually related to the quantity and quality of the WWTP inflows. The inflow contributions sometimes destabilize...
Article
The removal of N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) formation potential through a membrane bioreactor (MBR) coupled to a nanofiltration (NF) pilot plant that treats urban wastewater is investigated. The results are compared to the fate of the individual NDMA precursors detected: azithromycin, citalopram, erythromycin, clarithromycin, ranitidine, venlafaxi...
Article
Membrane aeration represents between 35 and 50% of the operational cost of membrane bioreactors (MBR). New automatic control systems and/or module configurations have been developed for aeration optimization. In this paper, we briefly describe an innovative MBR air scour control system based on permeability evolution and present the results of a fu...
Article
Emission of odours during the thermal drying in sludge handling processes is one of the main sources of odour problems in wastewater treatment plants. The objective of this work was to assess the use of the response surface methodology as a technique to optimize the chemical conditioning process of undigested sewage sludges, in order to improve the...
Article
Two experimental studies evaluated the effect of aerobic and membrane aeration changes on sludge properties, biological nutrient removal and filtration processes in a pilot plant membrane bioreactor. The optimal operating conditions were found at an aerobic dissolved oxygen set-point (DO) of 0.5 mg O2 L−1 and a membrane specific aeration demand (SA...
Article
Full-text available
Membrane filtration has gradually gained acceptance as the preferred pre-treatment for reverse osmosis (RO). In this paper, an integrated membrane bioreactor (MBR)/RO system for wastewater reuse treating real sewage water has been evaluated and the RO fouling has been characterised. The MBR achieved low values of organic matter, total nitrogen, PO(...
Article
Full-text available
Although there are few studies about clogging phenomenon in the peer-reviewed literature, it is considered one of the main operational challenges by membrane bioreactor (MBR) practitioners. This study presents data from the performance of a full-scale MBR affected by clogging, and ragging in particular. An evaluation of the efficiencies of differen...
Article
A coupled MBR-RO system has been successfully evaluated in a short term period (40 days) as a potential system to treat urban wastewater for reuse purposes. The RO fouling, probably the major challenge to overcome, provokes a pressure increment, a reduction of permeate flow and a reduction of the solute rejection efficiencies. The foulants have bee...
Article
In start-up periods low MLSS concentration may lead to fouling phenomena and uncommon frequency of chemical cleanings using membrane bioreactors. A knowledge-based control module for the optimisation of start-up procedures in membrane bioreactors is presented and validated in this paper. The main objective of the control module is to accelerate the...
Thesis
The work presented in this PhD thesis includes various partial studies aimed at developing a decision support system for membrane bioreactor integrated control. The decision support systems (DSS) have as a main goal to facilitate the operation of complex processes due to the multiple variables that are processed. For this reason, the research used...
Article
Membrane fouling is the most serious problem affecting membrane bioreactors (MBR). It decreases membrane permeability and consequently increases energy consumption. Various methods and techniques to measure fouling rates (FR) can be found in the literature, but few provide online data, and most are expensive or too invasive. The aim of this short c...
Article
BACKGROUND: Membrane bioreactors are used in an increasing number of wastewater treatment facilities because of their compactness and efficiency in solid-liquid separation, but energy requirements are still higher than other competitive technologies such as conventional activated sludge. RESULTS: In this paper the development of an air-scour contro...
Article
Full-text available
Although membrane bioreactors (MBRs) technology is still a growing sector, its progressive implementation all over the world, together with great technical achievements, has allowed it to reach a mature degree, just comparable to other more conventional wastewater treatment technologies. With current energy requirements around 0.6-1.1 kWh/m3 of tre...
Article
This study determines the impact of fouling on microorganisms retention by membrane of microfiltration immersed in MBR pilot plant. Escherichia coli, sulfate-reducing Clostridium spores, somatic coliphages and F-RNA bacteriophages was used as indicators. The membrane showed an almost total elimination of bacterial indicators, though the retention w...
Article
The impact of removable and irremovable fouling on the retention of viral and bacterial indicators by the submerged microfiltration membrane in an MBR pilot plant was evaluated. Escherichia coli, sulphite-reducing Clostridium spores, somatic coliphages and F-specific RNA bacteriophages were used as indicators. The membrane demonstrated almost compl...
Article
The study presented in this paper involves the development and implementation of an innovative ‘performance-based’ control system for aeration optimization in membrane bioreactors. Permeability was appointed as key parameter for directly comparing temporary changes in membrane performance. Transmembrane pressure (TMP) and flux are gathered each 10...
Article
Full-text available
MBR technology is currently challenging traditional wastewater treatment systems and is increasingly selected for WWTP upgrading. MBR systems typically are constructed on a smaller footprint, and provide superior treated water quality. However, the main drawback of MBR technology is that the permeability of membranes declines during filtration due...
Article
Full-text available
A three-element microfiltration (MF) hollow fiber (HF) membrane module has been evaluated for treating municipal wastewater by an immersed membrane bioreactor (iMBR) based on a pilot-scale plant. The flux-step method, classically used to identify the critical flux, was compared with an aeration-step method conducted at the identified critical flux...
Article
The destabilization of a microbial population is sometimes hard to solve when different biological reactions are coupled in the same reactor as in sequencing batch reactors (SBRs). This paper will try to guide through practical experiences the recovery of simultaneous nitrogen and phosphorus removal in an SBR after increasing the demand of wastewat...
Article
The performance of an MBR pilot plant for biological nutrient removal was evaluated during 210days of operation. The set point values for the internal recycles were determined in advance with the use of an optimisation spreadsheet based on the ASM2d model to optimise the simultaneous removal of C, N and P. The biological nutrient removal (BNR) effi...
Article
This study shows that an MBR pilot plant with UCT configuration is able to obtain high nutrient removal efficiency already during start-up. The biological nutrient removal (BNR) efficiencies significantly increased towards the end of the experimental run, achieving a COD removal efficiency exceeding 94% and N removal efficiency in the range of 89 t...
Article
Membrane bioreactors (MBRs) nowadays attract serious attention for the treatment of municipal wastewater, due to recent technical innovations and drastic cost reductions of the employed membranes. Especially the high biomass concentrations and long sludge retention times are favorable for the biodegradation of organic pollutants, resulting in high...
Article
Full-text available
Nº 478 66 IngenIería QuímIca Se presenta un proyecto, desarrollado a escala piloto, de reducción del consumo energético de los biorreactores de membrana de las plantas de tratamiento de aguas residuales. El proyecto consiste en el estudio de la implantación de un sistema de control avanzado enfocado a la reducción de la aireación de las membranas....
Article
Landfill leachate is a concern in the wastewater field due to its toxicity, high ammonium and low biodegradable organic matter concentrations. The aim of this paper is to study the reliability of landfill leachate treatment using Sequencing Batch Reactor (SBR) technology for biological nitrogen removal. During the study the SBR pilot plant treated...
Article
The total amount of solids in Wastewater Treatment Plants (WWTPs) and their distribution among the different elements and lines play a crucial role in the stability, performance and operational costs of the process. However, an accurate prediction of the evolution of solids concentration in the different elements of a WWTP is not a straightforward...
Article
The purpose of this paper is to provide a basis for selecting alcohols (i.e. ethanol and methanol) or short-chain volatile fatty acids (VFAs) (i.e. acetate and propionate) as the external carbon sources for enhanced biological phosphorus removal (EBPR) from wastewaters in adapted or unadapted activated sludge. When ethanol is used in an unacclimate...
Article
Full-text available
Membrane Bioreactors are used in an increasing number of wastewater treatment facilities because of their compactness and efficiency in solid-liquid separation. In this paper the development of an air-scour control algorithm based upon short term and long term membranes permeability evolution is presented. An open loop calibration and partial valid...

Projects

Projects (3)
Project
Drinking water treatment plants are tasked with providing potable water at all times, independently from the raw water quality variations. Specially in Mediterranean regions, where raw water can have big variations in terms of quality and quantity, the management of these utilities can become challenging. The goal of this project is to develop an environmental decision support system for the operation of drinking water treatment plants. To these means, mathematical models are built for different treatment units to provide real-time support in the daily operation.