A pilot study of constructed wetlands using duckweed (Lemna gibba L.) for treatment of domestic primary effluent in Israel

Noemi Ran, Moshe Agami, Gideon Oron

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    141 Scopus citations


    Constructed wetlands are well known as highly efficient system to treat wastewater from different sources. This treatment system is cost-effective for reuse in desert areas. A continuous flow, free water surface (FWS) pilot wetland using the duckweed plant Lemna gibba L. was constructed at the Blaustein Institute for Desert Research in Kiryat Sde Boker of the Negev, Israel, and operated on domestic primary effluents. Water quality and system efficiency were observed during the experiment for reuse purposes. Results indicated that, hydraulic residence time averaged 4.26±0.61d, average influent flow rate was 0.234±0.027m3/d and hydraulic load 0.22±0.03m/d. Hydraulic efficiency in the system was high and allowed good settling conditions. Suspended solids and organic matter removals were the highest and effluent concentrations were 13.1±9.7 and 40.3±11.9mg/l for TSS and total BOD5, respectively. Nitrogen removal was lower (10-20%) but slightly increased with higher nitrogen loads. Therefore, nitrogen content in the plants was high (4.3±0.5%/kg dry plant). Phosphorus removal was negligible. High removal for fecal coliform (∼95%) and effluent turbidity (>50%) were also observed.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)2241-2248
    Number of pages8
    JournalWater Research
    Issue number9
    StatePublished - 1 Jan 2004


    • Constructed wetlands
    • Continuous flow
    • Duckweed
    • Free water surface
    • Reuse
    • River rehabilitation
    • Sub-surface flow


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