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Water Res. 2013 Mar 1;47(3):1218-28. doi: 10.1016/j.watres.2012.11.043. Epub 2012 Dec 1.

Correlations of relevant membrane foulants with UF membrane fouling in different waters.

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State Key Laboratory of Urban Water Resource and Environment, Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin 150090, PR China.


Correlations between potential fouling-relevant substances and membrane fouling during ultrafiltration (UF) of different waters were investigated, including water samples from Lake Tegel, from a Berlin canal (Landwehrkanal) and from a wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) secondary effluent. The biopolymers quantified with liquid chromatography-organic carbon detection (LC-OCD) showed a remarkable correlation with UF membrane fouling for all the three water sources at different seasons. This finding suggests that the biopolymer content in water can be employed as a universal indicator for predicting membrane fouling potential in UF processes. The particulate matter in the two surface waters Lake Tegel and Berlin canal, as characterized by suspended solids and turbidity, also exhibited a distinct correlation with UF membrane fouling, although its correlation was slightly weaker than that of biopolymers. However, the humic substances, which are generally believed to be major membrane foulants, did not show any reliable correlation with the UF membrane fouling of the different waters. This work may provide useful information for the development of optimized fouling control strategies for sustainable UF operation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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