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Removal of pharmaceuticals, perfluoroalkyl substances and other micropollutants from wastewater using lignite, Xylit, sand, granular activated carbon (GAC) and GAC+Polonite® in column tests – Role of physicochemical properties
Dept. of Aquatic Sciences and Assessment, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU), Uppsala, Sweden.
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Sustainable development, Environmental science and Engineering.
Dept. of Aquatic Sciences and Assessment, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU), Uppsala, Sweden.
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Sustainable development, Environmental science and Engineering, Water and Environmental Engineering.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-6617-4001
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2018 (English)In: Water Research, ISSN 0043-1354, E-ISSN 1879-2448, Vol. 137, p. 97-106Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This study evaluated the performance of five different sorbents (granular activated carbon (GAC), GAC + Polonite® (GAC + P), Xylit, lignite and sand) for a set of 83 micropollutants (MPs) (pharmaceuticals, perfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs), personal care products, artificial sweeteners, parabens, pesticide, stimulants), together representing a wide range of physicochemical properties. Treatment with GAC and GAC + P provided the highest removal efficiencies, with average values above 97%. Removal rates were generally lower for Xylit (on average 74%) and lignite (on average 68%), although they proved to be highly efficient for a few individual MPs. The average removal efficiency for sand was only 47%. It was observed that the MPs behaved differently depending on their physicochemical properties. The physicochemical properties of PFASs (i.e. molecular weight, topological molecular surface area, log octanol water partition coefficient (Kow) and distribution coefficient between octanol and water (log D)) were positively correlated to observed removal efficiency for the sorbents Xylit, lignite and sand (p < 0.05), indicating a strong influence of perfluorocarbon chain length and associated hydrophobic characteristics. In contrast, for the other MPs the ratio between apolar and polar surface area (SA/SP) was positively correlated with the removal efficiency, indicating that hydrophobic adsorption may be a key feature of their sorption mechanisms. GAC showed to be the most promising filter medium to improve the removal of MPs in on-site sewage treatment facilities. However, more studies are needed to evaluate the removal of MPs in field trials.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2018. Vol. 137, p. 97-106
National Category
Water Engineering
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-227541DOI: 10.1016/j.watres.2018.03.008ISI: 000430520200011PubMedID: 29544207Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85043450947OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-227541DiVA, id: diva2:1206149
Funder
Swedish Research Council Formas, 216-2012-2101
Note

QC 20180516

Available from: 2018-05-16 Created: 2018-05-16 Last updated: 2018-09-07Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. An add-on filter technique to improve micropollutant removal and water quality in on-site sewage treatment facilities
Open this publication in new window or tab >>An add-on filter technique to improve micropollutant removal and water quality in on-site sewage treatment facilities
2018 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Onsite sewage treatment facilities (OSSFs) in Sweden currently release significant amounts of nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) into groundwater or/and receiving water bodies. Micropollutants (MPs) have been found in both surface water and groundwater, indicating insufficient removal of MPs by OSSFs. Two laboratory-scale column experiments, followed by a field experiment, were performed to study removal of a set of organic MPs by organic and inorganic sorbents. The set covered different product categories, e.g. an artificial sweetener, organophosphates, parabens, personal care products, perfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs), pesticides, pharmaceuticals, a plasticiser, a polymer impurity, stimulants and surfactants. An experiment using five organic and five inorganic sorbents showed that coal-based organic sorbents performed better than natural fibre and inorganic sorbents in removal of MPs, with 20% higher removal efficiency on average. Five sorbents were selected for a long-term column experiment examining 31 MPs. Physical properties and chemical structure of the sorbents, namely pore structure and surface functional groups, were found to be correlated to their capacity for removal of MPs. Molecular weight, solvent-accessible area, octanol-water partition coefficient and distribution-coefficient of PFASs were found to be strongly positively correlated with their removal by some sorbents. Organic sorbents with good performance in removal of MPs and a conventional sand bed showed limited ability to remove P, while calcium-rich sorbents increased P removal greatly. Two sorbents, granulated activated carbon (GAC) and xyloid lignite (Xylit), were tested for 24 weeks in an add-on filter for effluent from a soil treatment system and found to significantly improve removal of MPs. A replaceable add-on unit for removal of MPs from OSSF effluent is recommended and should contain an organic sorbent such as GAC or Xylit.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2018. p. 54
Series
TRITA-ABE-DLT ; 1821
Keywords
Micropollutant, on-site sewage facilities, physicochemical properties, pore structure, sorbents, surface functional group
National Category
Water Engineering
Research subject
Land and Water Resources Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-234314 (URN)978-91-7729-936-3 (ISBN)
Public defence
2018-09-28, D3, Lindstedtsvägen 5, Stockholm, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Funder
Swedish Research Council Formas, 216-2012-2101
Note

QC 20180907

Available from: 2018-09-07 Created: 2018-09-06 Last updated: 2018-09-11Bibliographically approved

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