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The second course of the series deals with aerobic and anaerobic respirometry of activated sludge. It contains four videos and a textbook chapter that can be accessed free of charge at this webpage.

Course information

  • About

    This course focuses on providing practical guidelines for the assessment of the aerobic and anaerobic respiration rate of biomass. The course is designed for both academics and practitioners, including graduate and postgraduate students, researchers, laboratory staff, plant operators, consultants, and other sector professionals with a background in sanitary, civil, environmental or (bio)chemical engineering, environmental biotechnology or biochemistry. As the course is at graduate level, participants with knowledge of and experience with the basic concepts of biological wastewater treatment will particularly benefit from it.

  • Syllabus

    The following topics are part of the course:

    • Basics of respiration and respirometry;
    • General methodology of respirometry;
    • Respirometry equipment;
    • Wastewater characterization;
    • Biomass characterization.

    For a detailed table of contents please click here.

  • Objectives │ Activities │ Assessment

    Learning objectives, activities and assessment depend on the delivery mode of the course. In general, learning objectives are more complex for instructor-led courses. This is particularly true for on campus courses and tailored training because they allow for guided, hands on, laboratory exercises and assignments. To view the learning objectives, activities and assessment of this course please click here.

  • Contact


Bio-methane potential

The execution of a bio-methane potential (BMP) test is shown in this video using concentrated waste activated sludge.

1 of 4

Specific methanogenic activity

A specific methanogenic activity (SMA) test is performed to assess the activity of digestate from a wastewater treatment plant.

2 of 4

Batch respirometry

A respirometric test is conducted to determine the aerobic conversions of biological wastewater treatment systems.

3 of 4


This video shows how to perform a respirometric test to assess on-line the oxygen demand or the toxicity of certain wastewater.

4 of 4

Download the chapter

Respirometry (5.2 MB)

Available in English, Spanish and Croatian. Coming soon in Russian, Hindi, Marathi and Tamil.


This chapter is an integral part of the textbook Experimental Methods in Wastewater Treatment. It is a complementary part of the course curriculum and includes background information on the processes of interest, details on experimental set-ups, preparation and execution, as well as a results discussion and interpretation, accompanied with examples and additional information. The book is also used for teaching the MSc specialization in Sanitary Engineering at IHE Delft and several other universities worldwide. It is the product of collaborative efforts by research groups and practitioners around the world. You can download your free copy of the book in one of currently available languages.
  • Van Loosdrecht M.C.M., Nielsen P.H, Lopez-Vazquez C.M., Brdjanovic D. Ed. (2016) Experimental Methods in Wastewater Treatment. IWA Publising, pg. 350, ISBN 9781780404745 (Hardback) 9781780404752 (eBook)