Constructed wetlands: Treatment of concentrated storm water runoff (Part A)

Byoung Hwa Lee, Miklas Scholz, Antje Horn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of this research was to assess the treatment efficiencies for gully pot liquor of experimental vertical-flow constructed wetland filters containing Phragmites australis (Cav.) Trin. ex Steud. (common reed) and filter media of different adsorption capacities. Six out of 12 filters received inflow water spiked with metals. For 2 years, hydrated nickel and copper nitrate were added to sieved gully pot liquor to simulate contaminated primary treated storm runoff. For those six constructed wetland filters receiving heavy metals, an obvious breakthrough of dissolved nickel was recorded after road salting during the first winter. However, a breakthrough of nickel was not observed, since the inflow pH was raised to eight after the first year of operation. High pH facilitated the formation of particulate metal compounds such as nickel hydroxide. During the second year, reduction efficiencies of heavy metal, 5-days at 20°C N-Allylthiourea biochemical oxygen demand (BOD) and suspended solids (SS) improved considerably. Concentrations of BOD were frequently <20 mg/L. However, concentrations for SS were frequently >30 mg/L. These are the two international thresholds for secondary wastewater treatment. The BOD removal increased over time due to biomass maturation, and the increase of pH. An analysis of the findings with case-based reasoning can be found in the corresponding follow-up paper (Part B).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)320-331
Number of pages12
JournalEnvironmental Engineering Science
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Conductivity
  • Constructed wetlands, biochemical oxygen demand
  • Gullies
  • Storm runoff
  • Suspended solids

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution


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