Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 25, Issue 23, pp 23227–23235 | Cite as

Impact of tryptophan on the formation of TCNM in the process of UV/chlorine disinfection

  • Lin DengEmail author
  • Longjia Wen
  • Wenjuan Dai
  • Rajendra Prasad Singh
Research Article


Low-pressure (LP) UV treatment after chlorine disinfection was associated with enhanced formation of trichloronitromethane (TCNM), a halonitromethane disinfection by-product (DBP), due to the chlorination of tryptophan. Evidence was found that the concentration of TCNM from tryptophan increased quickly to the maximum for the first instance. Moreover, the increase of TCNM under UV exceeded 10 times than under dark. Then, it was found to have an obvious decrease in the formation of TCNM, even finally hardly disappear. In order to elucidate reasons for this phenomenon, the effects of light intensity, initial tryptophan concentration, free chlorine concentration, pH, and tert-butanol (TBA) on the formation of TCNM were investigated under UV/chlorine treatment. Finally, the effects of tryptophan on the formation of TCNM and the direct photodegradation of TCNM under LP UV irradiation were studied for analyzing the possible pathways of TCNM formation from amino acid. Since amino acids are very common in water sources, further research into chemical oxidation of these species by LP UV and chlorine is recommended. It can help us to find the precursors of TCNM formation and reduce the risk of TCNM formation for drinking water and wastewater utilities.


TCNM Formation Tryptophan UV irradiation Chlorination 


Funding information

This work was financially supported by the Natural Science Foundation of Jiangsu Province (BK20151401), National Natural Science Foundation of China (No.21677032), and Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.

Supplementary material

11356_2018_2397_MOESM1_ESM.doc (214 kb)
ESM 1 (DOC 214 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lin Deng
    • 1
    Email author
  • Longjia Wen
    • 1
  • Wenjuan Dai
    • 1
  • Rajendra Prasad Singh
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Municipal EngineeringSoutheast UniversityNanjingChina

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