, Volume 21, Issue 3, pp 345–356 | Cite as

Optimization and enhancement of soil bioremediation by composting using the experimental design technique

  • Tahseen Sayara
  • Montserrat Sarrà
  • Antoni Sánchez
Original Paper


The objective of this study was the application of the experimental design technique to optimize the conditions for the bioremediation of contaminated soil by means of composting. A low-cost material such as compost from the Organic Fraction of Municipal Solid Waste as amendment and pyrene as model pollutant were used. The effect of three factors was considered: pollutant concentration (0.1–2 g/kg), soil:compost mixing ratio (1:0.5–1:2 w/w) and compost stability measured as respiration index (0.78, 2.69 and 4.52 mg O2 g−1 Organic Matter h−1). Stable compost permitted to achieve an almost complete degradation of pyrene in a short time (10 days). Results indicated that compost stability is a key parameter to optimize PAHs biodegradation. A factor analysis indicated that the optimal conditions for bioremediation after 10, 20 and 30 days of process were (1.4, 0.78, 1:1.4), (1.4, 2.18. 1:1.3) and (1.3, 2.18, 1:1.3) for concentration (g/kg), compost stability (mg O2 g−1 Organic Matter h−1) and soil:compost mixing ratio, respectively.


Soil bioremediation Compost stability Experimental design Pyrene Municipal solid waste 



Financial support was provided by the Spanish Ministerio de Educación y Ciencia (Project CTM2006-00315/TECNO). T. Sayara thanks Agencia Española de Cooperación Internacional para el Desarrollo (AECID) for a pre-doctoral scholarship.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tahseen Sayara
    • 1
  • Montserrat Sarrà
    • 1
  • Antoni Sánchez
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Chemical Engineering, Escola Tècnica Superior d’Enginyeria, Edifici QUniversitat Autònoma de BarcelonaBarcelonaSpain

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