Section 53
Chapter 52,652

Disinfection by-products in filter backwash water: implications to water quality in recycle designs

McCormick, N.J.; Porter, M.; Walsh, M.E.

Water Research 44(15): 4581-4589


ISSN/ISBN: 1879-2448
PMID: 20561666
DOI: 10.1016/j.watres.2010.05.042
Accession: 052651906

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The overall purpose of this research was to investigate disinfection by-product (DBP) concentrations and formation potential in filter backwash water (FBWW) and evaluate at bench-scale the potential impact of untreated FBWW recycle on water quality in conventional drinking water treatment. Two chlorinated organic compound groups of DBPs currently regulated in North America were evaluated, specifically trihalomethanes (THMs) and haloacetic acids (HAAs). FBWW samples were collected from four conventional filtration water treatment plants (WTP) in Nova Scotia, Canada, in three separate sampling and plant audit campaigns. THM and HAA formation potential tests demonstrated that the particulate organic material contained within FBWW is available for reaction with chlorine to form DBPs. The results of the study found higher concentrations of TTHMs and HAA9s in FBWW samples from two of the plants that target a higher free chlorine residual in the wash water used to clean the filters (e.g., clearwell) compared to the other two plants that target a lower clear well free chlorine residual concentration. Bench-scale experiments showed that FBWW storage time and conditions can impact TTHM concentrations in these waste streams, suggesting that optimization opportunities exist to reduce TTHM concentrations in FBWW recycle streams prior to blending with raw water. However, mass balance calculations demonstrated that FBWW recycle practice by blending 10% untreated FBWW with raw water prior to coagulation did not impact DBP concentrations introduced to the rapid mix stage of a plant's treatment train.

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