ABSTRACT: Although aluminum- and iron-based chemicals have been broadly used as the two most common types of coagulants for wastewater treatment, their impacts on the performance of downstream sludge management can be quite different and have not been well understood. This work reviewed and analyzed their similarities and differences in the context of the anaerobic digestion performance, dewaterability of digested sludge, and odor emission from dewatered biosolids. In short, iron-based coagulants tend to show less negative impact than aluminum-based coagulants. This can be attributed to the reduction of ferric to ferrous ions in the course of anaerobic digestion, which leads to a suite of changes in protein bioavailability, alkalinity and hydrogen sulfide levels, and in turn the sludge dewaterability and odor potential. Whether these observations still hold true in the context of thermally hydrolyzed sludge management remains to be studied.