Kaplan, L.A., and J.D. Newbold. 1995. Water Research 29(12):2696–2706.
Plug-flow biofilm reactors were colonized by microorganisms indigenous to streamwater and used to measure concentrations of biodegradable dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in streamwater. We performed experiments to determine the influence of physical, chemical, and biological factors on the operation of the bioreactors. Colonization required several months and the biological removal of DOC within the reactors was influenced by hydraulic residence time, dissolved organic carbon concentration, and water temperature. The large microbial biomass within a bioreactor buffered bioreactor performance from changes in chemical and physical parameters.