Nitrogen removal in vermifiltration: Mechanisms, influencing factors, and future research needs

Rajneesh Singh, Matteo D'Alessio, Jahangeer, Yulie Meneses, Shannon Bartelt-Hunt, Chittaranjan Ray

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


To meet global health and sanitation goals, there is a continued need for sustainable wastewater treatment alternatives that require minimal energy and investment. Vermifiltration, a technology gaining relevance in Africa and Asia, may be an alternative to traditional wastewater treatment systems due to its cost-effectiveness, ease of application and maintenance, and sustainability. However, nitrogen removal in vermifiltration is not well understood since most of the prior research focuses on organics removal. Thus, a state of the art review is necessary to separately focus on the mechanisms associated with nitrogen removal in vermifiltration, along with the factors affecting nitrogen removal. For the first time, this review attempts to present the types of vermifilter based on their flow pattern. The review further discusses the current status of the application of vermifiltration, along with the benefits and limitations associated with the adoption of this technology. It also explores possible strategies that could be adopted to maximize the nitrogen removal potential of vermifilters as optimizing nitrogen removal is critical for improving the performance of vermifiltration based treatment systems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number111868
JournalJournal of Environmental Management
StatePublished - Mar 1 2021


  • Design parameters
  • Earthworms
  • Mechanisms
  • Nitrogen removal
  • Treatment performance
  • Wastewater treatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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