Natural organic matter removal from raw surface water: Benchmarking performance of chemical coagulants through excitation-emission fluorescence matrix spectroscopy analysis

Raymond John C. Go, Hui Ling Yang, Chi Chuan Kan, Dennis C. Ong, Sergi Garcia-Segura, Mark Daniel G. de Luna

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Chemical disinfection of surface waters has been proven effective in minimizing the risk of contamination by water-borne pathogens. However, surface waters contain natural organic matter (NOM) which, upon chemical disinfection, is readily converted into hazardous disinfection-byproducts. Hence, NOM removal from these waters is critical. Chemical coagulation is a readily implementable technology to minimize these undesired side-effects by NOM removal. Herein, capabilities of ferric chloride (FeCl3 ) and polyaluminum chloride (PACl) as pre-treatment for NOM abatement from natural raw surface water have been benchmarked. Excitation-emission fluorescence matrix (EEM) spectroscopy characterization of NOM fractions demonstrated high removal efficiency. A two-level full factorial design was employed to analyze the effects of coagulant dosage and initial pH on the removal of turbidity, humic acid-like substances and fulvic acid-like substances from the raw water. Higher removal of ~77% NOM was attained with PACl than with FeCl3 (~72%). Optimization through response surface methodology showed that the initial pH—coagulant dosage interaction was significant in removing NOM and turbidity for both PACl and FeCl3 . These results identify the opportunity for coagulation technologies to prevent and minimize disinfection-byproducts formation through NOM removal.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number146
JournalWater (Switzerland)
Volume13
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2 2021

Keywords

  • Coagulation
  • Excitation-emission fluorescence matrix
  • Full factorial design
  • Natural organic matter
  • Physical water treatment
  • Raw surface water

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Aquatic Science
  • Water Science and Technology

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