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Environ Technol. 2014 May-Jun;35(9-12):1199-207.

Transport and removal of bacteriophages MS2 and PhiX174 in steel slag-amended soils: column experiments and transport model analyses.


The aim of this study was to investigate the removal of bacteriophages MS2 and PhiX174 in soils amended with converter furnace steel slag. Column experiments were performed to examine the bacteriophage removal in slag-amended (slag content: 0%, 25%, and 50%) loam soils. For comparison, column experiments were also conducted with Escherichia coli. In addition, chloride (Cl) was used as a conservative tracer to determine transport characteristics. Results showed mass recoveries of Cl of 98.6 +/- 3.5%, indicating that the experiments were conducted successfully. The mass recovery of MS2 was 86.7% in no slag (100% soil), decreasing to 0% in slag contents of 25% and 50%. The mass recovery of PhiX174 decreased from 87.8% to 51.5% with increasing slag content from 0% to 50%. In the case of E. coli, the mass recoveries decreased from 47.0% to 10.5% with increasing slag content from 0% to 50%. In the transport models analyses, the HYDRUS-1D code was used to quantify the sorption parameters from breakthrough curves. For the 100% soil column, a one-site kinetic sorption model was fitted to the data, whereas a two-site kinetic sorption model was fitted for slag-amended (25% and 50% slag) soil data. Results demonstrate that the addition of steel slag to soil enhances the removal of bacteriophages due to the presence of FeO in the steel slag. However, CaO could not contribute to the bacteriophage removal in our experimental conditions because the effluent pH (7.7-8.9) in slag-amended (25% and 50% slag) soils was not high enough to promote the bacteriophage inactivation.

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