The one-stage partial nitritation and anammox process with the hydroxyapatite (HAP)-based syntrophic granules was studied for the ammonium nitrogen removal from the effluents of a self-agitated anaerobic baffled reactor treating the fish processing wastewater. When the ammonium in the influent was 1140 mg N·L-1, a high nitrogen removal rate and nitrogen removal efficiency of 1.51 ± 0.10 kg N·m−3·d-1 and 88.2% were obtained, respectively. Anammox bacteria of Candidatus Kuenenia stuttgartiensis and ammonium oxidizing bacteria of Nitrosomonas were the two most predominant bacteria, while nitrite oxidizing bacteria activity was low and could be neglected during the treatment. The inorganic element properties of the sludge were analyzed by several methods to confirm the existence of HAP granules. Optical microscopic observation and scanning electron microscopy analysis revealed the structure of the granular sludge. This study supports the feasibility and potential of this process for high-efficiency nitrogen removal from fish processing wastewater.
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