Investigators from Institute of Environmental Engineering Target Biopolymers (Presence of biofilms on ultrafiltration membrane surfaces increases the quality of permeate produced during ultra-low pressure gravity-driven membrane filtration)
By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Ecology, Environment & Conservation -- Investigators discuss new findings in Biopolymers. According to news reporting out of Zurich, Switzerland, by VerticalNews editors, research stated, "This study evaluates the effect of the presence of biofilms on membrane surfaces on the quality of permeate produced during Gravity-driven membrane ultrafiltration. GDM ultrafiltration is applied to the decentralized production of drinking water."
Our news journalists obtained a quote from the research from the Institute of Environmental Engineering, "A second objective was to evaluate to what extent permeate quality is enhanced by pre-treating feed-water (using a packed bed biofilm reactor or a slow sand filter). The influence of the ageing of the biofilm on the permeate quality was evaluated and compared to the effect of virgin membranes. Permeate quality was evaluated in terms of Assimilable Organic Carbon (AOC) content and dissolved organic carbon fractions (e.g. biopolymers). Our results indicate that virgin ultrafiltration membrane remove a small fraction of the AOC and biopolymers (rejection 80%). However, over long-term the hydrolysis of the organic matter that accumulated on membrane surfaces increases the AOC content of the permeate, thus deteriorating the permeate quality. Pre-treatment of the feed-water help to control the biofilm accumulation and thus to limit the deterioration of the permeate quality. Permeate flux stabilised at average values of 7.5-8.9 L m(-2) h(-1). But the presence of pre-treatment helped to increase permeate flux (+12 and 19%, with the packed bed biofilm reactor and with the slow sand filter, respectively)."
According to the news editors, the research concluded: "Overall our study demonstrates that tolerating the presence of biofilm on membrane surface has a beneficial effect on the quality of permeate even if its quantity is decreased."
For more information on this research see: Presence of biofilms on ultrafiltration membrane surfaces increases the quality of permeate produced during ultra-low pressure gravity-driven membrane filtration. Water Research, 2014;60():164-173. Water Research can be contacted at: Pergamon-Elsevier Science Ltd, The Boulevard, Langford Lane, Kidlington, Oxford OX5 1GB, England. (Elsevier - www.elsevier.com; Water Research - www.elsevier.com/wps/product/cws_home/309)
Our news journalists report that additional information may be obtained by contacting N. Derlon, ETH, Inst Environm Engn, CH-8093 Zurich, Switzerland. Additional authors for this research include J. Mimoso, T. Klein, S. Koetzsch and E. Morgenroth.
Keywords for this news article include: Zurich, Switzerland, Europe, Biopolymers
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