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Int J Environ Health Res. 2010 Jun;20(3):171-87. doi: 10.1080/09603120903440665.

Effect of production variables on microbiological removal in locally-produced ceramic filters for household water treatment.

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  • 1Enteric Diseases Epidemiology Branch, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, USA.


Diarrhoeal diseases cause an estimated 1.87 million child deaths per year. Point-of-use filtration using locally made ceramic filters improves microbiological quality of stored drinking water and prevents diarrhoeal disease. Scaling-up ceramic filtration is inhibited by lack of universal quality control standards. We investigated filter production variables to determine their affect on microbiological removal during 5-6 weeks of simulated normal use. Decreases in the clay:sawdust ratio and changes in the burnable decreased effectiveness of the filter. Method of silver application and shape of filter did not impact filter effectiveness. A maximum flow rate of 1.7 l(-hr) was established as a potential quality control measure for one particular filter to ensure 99% (2- log(10)) removal of total coliforms. Further research is indicated to determine additional production variables associated with filter effectiveness and develop standardized filter production procedures prior to scaling-up.

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