Effectiveness and Kinetics of Ferrate as a Disinfectant for Ballast Water

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The objective of the study was to determine whether ferrate could meet the international standards for successful ballast water treatment, including final concentrations of less than 1 CFU/ml of Enterococci, less than 2.5 CFUs/ml of Escherichia coli, and less than 1 CFU/100 mls of Vibrio cholerae. Pure cultures of Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumoniae, and V. cholerae, and a mixed culture of Enterococcus faecium and E. faecilis, were grown in saline solution to simulate ballast water, and were treated with dosages of ferrate ranging from 0.25-5.0 mg/l. A ferrate dose of 5 mg/l resulted in complete disinfection of all organisms tested, and smaller dosages were also very effective. Tailing was consistently observed, and the Hom’s model appeared to most accurately represent the action of ferrate on these organisms. Salinity and pH did not adversely affect results, and regrowth was not a problem. Ferrate shows good potential as an effective disinfectant in the treatment of ballast water.

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