Influence of industrial contamination in municipal secondary effluent disinfection by UV/H2O2

Abstract

Advanced oxidation processes, including UV/H2O2, are methods able to remove diverse classes of organic contaminants and disinfect water and wastewater. However, the variation in the matrix composition can influence the inactivation of microorganisms due to the presence of competing reactive material, which consumes the available oxidants. This problem can lead to the use of inadequate oxidant/radiation dose and disturb a correct treatment. The aim of this study was to assess the efficiency of UV/H2O2 to inactivate microbiological indicators in secondary effluents in the presence of high concentration of carbonate, nitrate, metals, and industrial organic contaminants. Metals had a positive influence on inactivation acting as catalysts. Zn, Fe, and all metals simultaneously presented toxic effects to the indicator organisms in the higher concentrations before the treatment. Even in metals presence, the negative effect of carbonate and the industrial organic contaminants on indicators inactivation was very important. Bacteria regrowth after 72 h was also affected by the same inhibiting substances, but the metals acted positively inhibiting it. The disinfection indicators had different sensibilities to the spiked substances. Escherichia coli inactivation was more affected than total coliforms by the presence of the industrial contamination, which can lead to different interpretation of inhibition degree depending of the used disinfection indicator.

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Funding

Financial support was provided by the Sao Paulo Research Foundation (FAPESP) grants [2014/17774-1 and 2016/07911-7] and the Brazilian National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq) grants [424395/2016-9 and 308914/2017-1].

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Correspondence to Renato F. Dantas.

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Highlights

• The transition metals acted as catalysts of the disinfection.

• Carbonate, nitrate, and organic industrial contaminants inhibited disinfection.

• Regrowth was also increase by disinfection inhibitors.

Escherichia coli was more inhibited than total coliforms.

• Industrial contamination caused 50% of cost increase in disinfection.

Responsible editor: Vítor Pais Vilar

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A. Malvestiti, J., F. Dantas, R. Influence of industrial contamination in municipal secondary effluent disinfection by UV/H2O2. Environ Sci Pollut Res 26, 13286–13298 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-019-04705-1

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Keywords

  • Secondary effluent
  • Matrix composition
  • Industrial contamination
  • Toxicity
  • Disinfection
  • Regrowth