Journal of Environmental Treatment Techniques  
2020, Volume 8, Issue 3, Pages: 988-992  
J. Environ. Treat. Tech.  
ISSN: 2309-1185  
Journal web link:  
Start-up of Modified Anaerobic Baffled Reactor for  
the Treatment of Landfill Leachate by Using  
Granular Sludge  
Imran Ahmad , Shreeshivadasan Chelliapan , Norazli Othman , Norhayati Abdullah and  
Nithiya Arumugam2  
Malaysia Japan International Institute of Technology (MJIIT), Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Jalan Sultan Yahya Petra, 54100, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia  
Department of Engineering, Razak Faculty of Technology and Informatics, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Jalan Sultan Yahya Petra, 54100, Kuala  
Lumpur, Malaysia  
Received: 23/01/2020  
Accepted: 17/06/2020  
Published: 20/09/2020  
The objective of this study was to valuate the start-up performance of the Modified Anaerobic Baffled Reactor (MABR) system by using  
granular sludge treating landfill leachate. Anaerobic reactor start-up is a complex process as it depends on the substrate characteristics,  
working conditions, inoculum and reactor configuration. To reduce the start-up time and have better operational parameters control in  
anaerobic processes, important factors are needed to enhance the high-rate anaerobic systems efficiency. Sludge granulation was indeed an  
achievement in anaerobic wastewater treatment technology and has greatly enhanced its efficiency and applicability. It holds many  
advantages, such as mutual defence against antagonists, efficient reactor operation without sludge washout, and effluent with low suspended  
solids. Granules are the functional units which comprise different microorganisms that are required for the methanogenic degradation of  
organic matter. Results from this study showed a successful start-up of the MABR system at an organic loading rate (OLR) of 0.0875  
kgCOD/m /d and hydraulic retention time (HRT) of four days. During this period the Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD) removal efficiency  
was 99 % and the gas production increased steadily from 0.013 L/d to 0.021 L/d.  
Keyword: Landfill leachate, Modified anaerobic baffled reactor (MABR), Granular sludge, Meat extract  
Baffled Reactor (MABR) in this study was 35°C 40°C. Shorter  
start-up times can be made by using wastewater that is low in  
particulate organics. When the organic loading rate (OLR) and  
Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD) concentrations are reduced by  
Out of the problems which are generally encountered in the  
anaerobic treatment of wastewater, one of the problems is related  
to the complication in start-up. This was discussed in previous  
studies that a considerable amount of time was required in the  
start-up of anaerobic systems [1]. The main issue of concern is the  
development of microbial culture which is suitable the most to the  
incoming wastewater, vulnerable nature of most anaerobic  
bacteria and utmost oxygen liability of the enzyme systems of  
obligate anaerobes renders the reactor population more  
susceptible to slight fluctuations [1].  
0% ,then the value of OLR should be increased[5]. If the time of  
start-up of anaerobic reactors is reduced and the operational  
parameters of the system are optimum, then it will contribute to  
the increase in the efficiency of the anaerobic system [6]. The  
objective of this study is to identify and evaluate the start-up  
performance of the MABR by using synthetic wastewater (meat  
Sludge granulation is indeed an achievement in anaerobic  
wastewater treatment technology as granular sludge has many  
advantages as compared to sewage sludge. Biomass retention is  
possible inside the reactor without the supply of a carrier material,  
thereby improving the economics of the process. Anaerobic  
granules are basically the particulate biofilms, formed  
impulsively by auto immobilisation of anaerobic bacteria in the  
absence of a support media. These dense particles, consisting of  
an entwined mixture of the collegial anaerobic micro-organisms  
that work together in methane fermentation, are the driving force  
While initialising the start-up of anaerobic reactor, the  
biomass in the reactor system is to get acclimatised with the type  
and strength of wastewater(substrate),operating parameters in the  
reactor system and the configuration of the reactor.Additionally,  
fast growing acidogens outnumber methanogens and certain  
acetogen [2,4]. As a result, volatile acids (VA) and dissolved H  
are accumulated. Generally, anaerobic reactors are commenced  
on mesophilic temperature (33°C 40°C) and it advances the  
growth of methanogens. The temperature maintained during the  
treatment of landfill leachate by using Modified Anaerobic  
Corresponding author: Imran Ahmad, Malaysia Japan International Institute of Technology (MJIIT), Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Jalan  
Sultan Yahya Petra, 54100, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Email: