Arsenic removal by ferric-chloride coagulation – effect of phosphate, bicarbonate and silicate
Jar tests with synthetic water were carried out in order to investigate the effect of phosphate, bicarbonate and silicate on arsenic removal efficiency by in-situ formed ferric hydroxide. Above 12 mg C/L inorganic carbon concentration, the adverse effect of bicarbonate was definite, and resulted in higher remaining arsenic concentration. At all pH values (7.5–7.8) and coagulant dosages (0.84–3.00 mg/L Fe) tested, the negative effect of phosphate on arsenic removal was also evident. In the presence of silicate small ferric-hydroxide colloids were formed, which were able to go through the 0.45 μm pore-size membrane. Compared to silicate-free systems, 2.5–3.5 times higher coagulant dose was needed to achieve the target arsenic concentration in the presence of 14–23 mg/L Si. At higher pH values the adverse effect of silicate was even more significant. All data were merged and multiple linear regression analysis was carried out in order to build up a robust model to predict the residual arsenic concentration if the raw water contains 50–60 μg/L initial arsenic concentration. The estimation was based on the following variables: PO4-P concentration, final pH, Si concentration, Fe(III) dose. The most important influencing factors proved to be the silicate concentration and applied coagulant dosage.
Keywords: arsenic removal, drinking water, ferric-chloride coagulation, jar-test, phosphate, regression analysis, silicate
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