Evaluation of Impact of Coagulant Type on Operation Parameters in Direct Filtration

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Associate Professor, Dept. of Environmental Science, University of Tehran

2 Former Graduate Student of Civil Engineering & Environmental Science, Faculty of Environmental Science, University of Tehran

3 Assistant Professor, Department of Water & Wastewater, (Shahid Abbaspour) Water & Power University


Numerous advantages have been reported on PAC (poly aluminum chloride) used as a coagulant over other coagulants such as alum and ferric chloride used in conventional water treatment process with medium and high turbidity levels. These include lower amounts of PACL required specially in removing turbidity, larger floc grain formation, reduced floc sedimentation time, lower sludge production, and relaxation of the need for pH adjustment by lime, among others. The present study aims to evaluate the effects of different coagulants such as ferric chloride and PACL on direct filtration and to identify the most effective material based on both turbidity and particle removal efficiencies. A perfectly experimental pilot system, including raw water preparation, coagulation, flocculation, distribution measurement, and filtration units, was designed and used. Raw water turbidity level in the experimental pilot was below 10 NTU. The effects of various parameters such as coagulant type, filtration rate, and coagulant dosage on the performance of the filter were investigated. The results obtained from several filtration cycles under different conditions indicated that average effluent turbidity level, effluent particle numbers, effluent turbidity variation graph, and effluent particle graph were lower throughout the filtration cycle when PACL was used compared to when ferric chloride was used as the coagulant. Increasing filtration rate led to increased turbidity and particle number. Addition of 2 mg/l of PACL (poor coagulation and flocculation scenario) was compared with addition of 5 mg/l of ferric chloride (strong coagulation and flocculation scenario). The results indicated that higher average values of turbidity removal but lower turbidity and particle removal efficiencies obtained in the case of the poor coagulation and flocculation scenario.


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