Fluoride Toxicity and Recent Advances in Water Defluoridation with Specific Emphasis on Nanotechnology

  • Kamya Parashar
  • Kriveshini Pillay
  • Raghunath Das
  • Arjun MaityEmail author
Part of the Environmental Chemistry for a Sustainable World book series (ECSW, volume 23)


Water contamination has been a global challenge for many decades. A variety of inorganic and organic pollutants have indeed degraded the quality of water over the years. Among these various pollutants, fluoride ions stand out as the inorganic pollutants of prime concern in ground- and drinking water since concentrations which exceed 1,5 mg/L can lead to skeleton fluorosis and other bone disorders. The defluoridation of ground- and drinking water has therefore become a topic of great importance. This chapter therefore serves to review the current global distribution of fluoride in ground- and drinking water. Some attention is also paid to the natural and anthropogenic sources of fluoride as well as the chemistry of fluorides which renders them toxic. The various toxic effects of fluoride are highlighted. The defluoridation techniques employed thus far are also critically reviewed and discussed. Much emphasis is devoted to adsorption technology which is currently the most popular technology due to its simplicity and effectiveness and the various adsorbents that have been tested for defluoridation. Each adsorbent is critically analysed with respect to its merits and demerits. Lastly, the benefits of nanotechnology and nanostructured adsorbents are discussed, and future research prospects on the use of such a technology are presented.


Fluoride Fluoride toxicity Water defluoridation Chemical precipitation Reverse osmosis Nanofiltration Electrodialysis Ion exchange Adsorption Adsorbents Nanomaterials Carbon nanotubes Graphene Nanosized metal oxides Biopolymers Conducting polymers Nanocomposites 


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Authors and Affiliations

  • Kamya Parashar
    • 1
  • Kriveshini Pillay
    • 1
  • Raghunath Das
    • 1
  • Arjun Maity
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Applied ChemistryUniversity of JohannesburgJohannesburgSouth Africa
  2. 2.DST/CSIR National Center for Nanostructured MaterialsCouncil for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR)PretoriaSouth Africa

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