Definitions for biochemical oxygen demand

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Random House Webster's College Dictionary

bi′ochem′ical ox′ygen demand`(n.)

  1. the oxygen required by aerobic organisms, as those in sewage, for metabolism.

    Category: Biochemistry

    Ref: Also called biological oxygen demand.

Origin of biochemical oxygen demand:



  1. biochemical oxygen demand(Noun)

    The amount of oxygen needed by aerobic microorganisms to decompose all the organic matter in a sample of water; it is used as a measure of pollution.


  1. Biochemical oxygen demand

    Biochemical oxygen demand or B.O.D is the amount of dissolved oxygen needed by aerobic biological organisms in a body of water to break down organic material present in a given water sample at certain temperature over a specific time period. The term also refers to a chemical procedure for determining this amount. This is not a precise quantitative test, although it is widely used as an indication of the organic quality of water. The BOD value is most commonly expressed in milligrams of oxygen consumed per litre of sample during 5 days of incubation at 20 °C and is often used as a robust surrogate of the degree of organic pollution of water. BOD can be used as a gauge of the effectiveness of wastewater treatment plants. It is listed as a conventional pollutant in the U.S. Clean Water Act. BOD is similar in function to chemical oxygen demand, in that both measure the amount of organic compounds in water. However, COD is less specific, since it measures everything that can be chemically oxidized, rather than just levels of biologically active organic matter.


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