In China, the intensive livestock farming produces massive livestock wastewater with high concentration of phosphorus. Discharge of these compounds to surface water not only causes water eutrophication but also wastes phosphorus resources for plant growth. Therefore, it’s necessary combining the removal of phosphorus from livestock wastewater with its recovery and reuse as fertilizer. As a valuable slow-release mineral fertilizer, struvite crystallization has become a focus in phosphorus recovery. In this chapter, struvite crystallization mechanism, reaction factors, crystallizers, and the applications of struvite as fertilizer are discussed. Two steps of nucleation and crystal growth for struvite crystallization from generation to growth are introduced. The reaction factors, including molar ratio of magnesium and phosphate, solution pH, coexisting substances, and seeding assist, of struvite crystallization are summarized. Several innovate types of crystallizer, which relate to the shape and size of harvest struvite to realize the phosphorus recycling, are demonstrated. Due to the influence of toxic or harmful impurities in struvite on its reuse as fertilizer, the environmental risk evaluation of struvite application is introduced. In conclusion, struvite crystallization is a promising tool for recovering phosphorus from livestock wastewater.
Part of the book: Physico-Chemical Wastewater Treatment and Resource Recovery