Phosphorus Accumulation Pattern in a Subsurface Constructed Wetland Treating Residential Wastewater
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A horizontal subsurface flow constructed wetland was investigated after eight years of residential wastewater discharge (150 person equivalents). Twenty core samples distributed over the entire wetland were taken from the soil matrix. The distribution pattern of phosphorus (P) accumulation in the substrate of the wetland was determined using kriging technique and P sorption was related to the content of aluminum (Al), calcium (Ca) and iron (Fe). The correlations found between Al, Ca and Fe content and P accumulation in the bed substrate were weak: R2 = 0.09, R2 = 0.21 and R2 = 0.28, respectively. Great heterogeneity was observed in the distribution of Ca, P and organic matter in the superficial and deeper layers of the bed. Hydraulic problems associated with wastewater discharge and conductivity of the bed substrate were suggested to have negative effects on the wetland performance.
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