Chromium-Contaminated Ground Water Bioremediation

A bench-scale study demonstrated the viability of bioremediation of chromium contaminated ground water. The key factor to successful bioremediation was the selection of chromium-tolerant microbes. Actual contaminated ground water samples for the test. The ground water contained total chromium of 280 mg/L, with 270 mg/L hexavalent chromium.

The original sample was split into four bottles, with one preserved as a standard. Three split samples were treated with different blends of microbes. All three of the treated samples showed a reduction in the total dissolved chromium and nearly complete conversion from hexavalent to trivalent chromium. The average total chromium concentration in the treated samples was 160 mg/L and the hexavalent chromium concentration was 0.017 mg/L in two of the three treated samples. The sediments were not isolated for testing due to the small volume of sediment in the sample bottles.

Vials Showing Chromium Bioremediation Results

The photograph shows the untreated chromium-contaminated water on the left. The three bottles to the right were treated with various microbial blends.