IWA Publishing

Organic compounds migrating from plastic pipes into water

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Case studies were carried out to identify potential chemical contaminants migrating to drinking water from polyvinyl chloride (PVC) or polyethylene (PE) pipes, available on the Polish market. Analyses were carried out by gas chromatography (GC) coupled with mass spectrometry (MS). Analysis of organotin compounds in water in contact with PVC pipes from different manufacturers found variability: monobutyltin (169 and 425 ng/L) and dibutyltin (51–72 and 249–263 ng/L) were detected in two of three samples, A1 and A2 respectively. Tributyltin was detected only in the second of these (92 ng/L). No organotin compounds were detected in sample A3, but a considerable quantity of lead (0.13–0.82 mg/L) was observed. Nineteen organic compounds, also volatile organic compounds such as xylene, styrene, phenols, and ethylmethylbenzene, were identified during GC-MS analysis of water samples in contact with high density PE pipe. Phenolic compounds related to antioxidants such as ditertbutyl-hydroxytoluene (0.29–3.6 and 0.84–9.8 ppb) and their degradation products such as t-butyl-methylphenol (0.9–11.8 ppb) were also detected.

Keywords: planning and scheduling, pollution, water supply

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