This study aims to recover the used coagulants from two water treatment plants via acidification technique. The water treatment sludge (WTS) was acidified with sulfuric acid (H2SO-4) at variable normalities (0.5, 1, 1.5, 2.0 and 2.5 N). The surface morphology and functionalities of both recovered coagulants were analysed using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). The performance of recovered coagulants was tested for turbidity removal in surface water treatment at different coagulant dosages and pH. It was found that the optimum normality of H2SO4 for recovered alum was 1.5 N, where 66% turbidity removal was recorded. The recovered PAC treated with 1.0 N H2SO4 indicated high turbidity removal percentage, which was 50.5%. The turbidity removal increased with increasing coagulant dosage. More than 80% turbidity removal was achieved with 40 mg/L dosage of recovered alum and recovered PAC. Maximum removal (85%) was observed with 50 mg/L dosage of recovered alum. For commercial coagulant, the turbidity removal was higher, with a difference of up to 6% in favor of recovered alum. The potential reuse of coagulants can be explored in order to reduce the operating costs and promotes the reduction of WTS disposal.
Recovery of cellulose fibres from paper mill effluent has been studied using common polysaccharides or biopolymers such as Guar gum, Xanthan gum and Locust bean gum as flocculent. Guar gum is commonly used in sizing paper and routinely used in paper making. The results have been compared with the performance of alum, which is a common coagulant and a key ingredient of the paper industry. Guar gum recovered about 3.86mg/L of fibre and was most effective among the biopolymers. Settling velocity distribution curves demonstrated that Guar gum was able to settle the fibres faster than the other biopolymers; however, alum displayed the highest particle removal rate than all the biopolymers at any of the settling velocities. Alum, Guar gum, Xanthan gum and Locust bean gum removed 97.46%, 94.68%, 92.39% and 92.46% turbidity of raw effluent at a settling velocity of 0.5cm/min, respectively. The conditions for obtaining the lowest sludge volume index such as pH, dose and mixing speed were optimised for guar gum which was the most effective among the biopolymers. Response surface methodology was used to design all experiments, and an optimum operational setting was proposed. The test results indicate similar performance of alum and Guar gum in terms of floc settling velocities and sludge volume index. Since Guar gum is a plant derived natural substance, it is environmentally benign and offers a green treatment option to the paper mills for pulp recycling.
In an effort to seek a new technical platform for disposal of drinking water treatment sludge (DWTS: alum sludge), pyrolysis of DWTS was mainly investigated in this study. To establish a more sustainable thermolytic platform for DWTS, this study particularly employed CO2 as reactive gas medium. Thus, this study laid great emphasis on elucidating the mechanistic roles of CO2 during the thermolysis of DWTS. A series of the TGA tests of DWTS in CO2 in reference to N2 revealed no occurrence of the heterogeneous reaction between CO2 and the sample surface of DWTS. As such, at the temperature regime before initiating the Boudouard reaction (i.e., ≥700 °C), the mass decay patterns of DWTS in N2 and CO2 were nearly identical. However, the gaseous effluents from lab-scale pyrolysis of DWTS in CO2 in reference to N2 were different. In sum, the homogeneous reactions between CO2 and volatile matters (VMs) evolved from the thermolysis of DWTS led to the enhanced generation of CO. Also, CO2 suppressed dehydrogenation of VMs. Such the genuine mechanistic roles of CO2 in the thermolysis of DWTS subsequently led to the compositional modifications of the chemical species in pyrolytic oil. Furthermore, the biochar composite was obtained as byproduct of pyrolysis of DWTS. Considering that the high content of Al2O3 and Fe-species in the biochar composite imparts a strong affinity for As(V), the practical use of the biochar composite as a sorptive material for arsenic (V) was evaluated at the fundamental levels. This work reported that adsorption of As(V) onto the biochar composite followed the pseudo-second order model and the Freundlich isotherm model.
Landfill leachate is a heavily polluted and a likely hazardous liquid that is produced as a result of water infiltration through solid wastes generated industrially and domestically. This study investigates the potential of using psyllium husk as coagulant and coagulant aid for the treatment of landfill leachate. Psyllium husk has been tested as primary coagulant and as coagulant aid with poly-aluminum chloride (PACl) and aluminum sulfate (alum). As primary coagulant, the optimum dosage and pH for PACl were 7.2 and 7.5 g/L, respectively, with removal efficiencies of 55, 80 and 95% for COD, color and TSS, respectively. For alum, the optimum conditions were 11 g/L alum dosage and pH 6.5 with removal efficiencies of 58, 79 and 78% for COD, color and TSS, respectively. The maximum removal efficiencies of COD, color and TSS were 64, 90 and 96%, respectively, when psyllium husk was used as coagulant aid with PACl. Based on the results, psyllium husk was found to be more effective as coagulant aid with PACl in the removal of COD, color and TSS as compared to alum. Zeta potential test was carried out for leachate, PACl, alum and psyllium husk before and after running the jar test to enhance the results of the jar test experiments.
An evaluation of two commonly used coagulants, alum and ferric chloride was conducted to treat retention pond water using microfiltration. To determine the effectiveness of these coagulants in removing turbidity, color, and total suspended solids two different sets of the experiments were performed. Preliminary test was carried out to evaluate the optimum dosages of coagulants. Optimum turbidity removal was achieved with a 4 and 20 mg/L dosage for ferric chloride and alum, respectively. Generally, coupling microfiltration with coagulation using both alum and ferric chloride exhibited excellent effectiveness for turbidity, color, and total suspended solids removal. The efficiency for alum and ferric chloride for turbidity removal were 96 and 98%, respectively, which was greater than 89% removal using microfiltration alone. Furthermore, microfiltration only demonstrated 81 and 83% removal efficiency for color and total suspended solids removal, respectively. However, microfiltration-coagulation using alum and ferric chloride resulted about 83 and 93% color removal, and 92 and 94% total suspended solids removal, respectively.
Despite recent interest in transforming biomass into bio-oil and syngas, there is inadequate information on the compatibility of byproducts (e.g., biochar) with agriculture and water purification infrastructures. A pyrolysis at 300°C yields efficient production of biochar, and its physicochemical properties can be improved by chemical activation, resulting in a suitable adsorbent for the removal of natural organic matter (NOM), including hydrophobic and hydrophilic substances, such as humic acids (HA) and tannic acids (TA), respectively. In this study, the adsorption affinities of different HA and TA combinations in NOM solutions were evaluated, and higher adsorption affinity of TA onto activated biochar (AB) produced in the laboratory was observed due to its superior chemisorption tendencies and size-exclusion effects compared with that of HA, whereas hydrophobic interactions between adsorbent and adsorbate were deficient. Assessment of the AB role in an adsorption-coagulation hybrid system as nuclei for coagulation in the presence of aluminum sulfate (alum) showed a synergistic effect in a HA-dominated NOM solution. An AB-alum hybrid system with a high proportion of HA in the NOM solution may be applicable as an end-of-pipe solution.
The objective of this study is to extract and characterize lignin from oil palm biomass (OPB) by dissolution in 1-butyl-3-methylimidazolium chloride ([bmim][Cl]), followed by the lignin extraction through the CO2 gas purging prior to addition of aluminum potassium sulfate dodecahydrate (AlK(SO4)2 · 12H2O). The lignin yield, Y(L) (%wt.) was found to be dependent of the types of OPB observed for all precipitation methods used. The lignin recovery, RL (%wt.) obtained from CO2-AlK(SO4)2 · 12H2O precipitation was, however dependent on the types of OPB, which contradicted to that of the acidified H2SO4 and HCl solutions of pH 0.7 and 2 precipitations. Only about 54% of lignin was recovered from the OPB. The FTIR results indicate that the monodispersed lignin was successfully extracted from the OPT, OPF and OPEFB having a molecular weight (MW) of 1331, 1263 and 1473 g/mol, and degradation temperature of 215, 207.5 and 272 °C, respectively.
Biological aerated filter (BAF), sand filtration (SF), alum and Moringa oleifera coagulation were investigated as a pre-treatment for reducing the organic and biofouling potential component of an ultrafiltration (UF) membrane in the treatment of lake water. The carbohydrate content was mainly responsible for reversible fouling of the UF membrane compared to protein or dissolved organic carbon (DOC) content. All pre-treatment could effectively reduce these contents and led to improve the UF filterability. Both BAF and SF markedly led to improvement in flux than coagulation processes, and alum gave greater flux than M. oleifera. This was attributed to the effective removal and/or breakdown of high molecular weight (MW) organics by biofilters. BAF led to greater improvement in flux than SF, due to greater breakdown of high MW organics, and this was also confirmed by the attenuated total reflection-Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy analysis. Coagulation processes were ineffective in removing biofouling potential components, whereas both biofilters were very effective as shown by the reduction of low MW organics, biodegradable dissolved organic carbon and assimilable organic carbon contents. This study demonstrated the potential of biological pre-treatments for reducing organic and biofouling potential component and thus improving flux for the UF of lake water treatment.