The University of Massachusetts Amherst
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Enhanced coagulation: US requirements and a broader view

TitleEnhanced coagulation: US requirements and a broader view
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication1999
AuthorsEdzwald JK, Tobiason JE
JournalWater Science & Technology
Start Page63
Keywordsalum, Cryptosporidium, Enhanced coagulation, Giardia, Natural organic matter, optimum coagulation, Pathogen removal, residual Al, sludge production, TOC removal, UV absorbance

Enhanced Coagulation is a new regulatory requirement in the United States aimed at removing TOC by coagulation thereby controlling formation of disinfection byproducts. Coagulation principles are summarized for alum coagulation of natural organic matter (NOM). Negatively charged NOM creates a coagulant demand for positively charged Al species resulting in a stoichiometric relationship between the alum dosage and the raw water DOC that is pH dependent. The paper addresses coagulation with a broader view than Enhanced Coagulation, termed multiple objective coagulation. In general the objectives include: 1) to maximize particle and turbidity removals by downstream solid-liquid separation, 2) to maximize TOC and DBP precursor removals, 3) to minimize residual coagulant, 4) to minimize sludge production, and 5) to minimize operating costs. Optimum coagulation conditions are those that maximize pathogen removals, produce low turbidities and particle counts, and minimize residual Al. It is shown, for treatment of waters of low alkalinity, that the optimum alum dosage selected to minimize UV absorbance with strict pH control produced excellent treatment for turbidity, pathogens, and NOM. Full scale plant data are used to demonstrate a dual coagulation strategy of alum and cationic polymer that reduces sludge production and overall operating costs compared to alum alone.