Discovery of Welcome Biopolymers in Surface Water: Improvements in Drinking Water Production.
The presence of biopolymers in surface waters and their significance for potable water supply have received little attention previously owing to their low concentrations. In this paper, we present the results of an extensive study that has investigated the role and benefits of biopolymers during the purification of surface water with reference to their specific biological and physico-chemical properties. Using samples collected from two representative surface waters in China and the United Kingdom, macromolecular biopolymers were separated and concentrated for subsequent investigation of their role in coagulation, metal ion adsorption, and membrane separation. Our results show that biopolymers significantly improve the antifouling capability of membrane nanofiltration, in combination with the enhanced conventional coagulation performance and additional security against several unhealthy metal pollutants (e.g., Fe, Al, and Cr). We believe this is the first study that reveals the versatile benefits and the fate of natural biopolymers in surface water purification processes.
Su, Z; Yu, W; Liu, T; Li, X; Graham, NJD; Lu, Y; Wiesner, MR
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