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Transport of Pathogen Surrogates in Soil Treatment Units: Numerical Modeling
Water 2014, 6(4), 1028-1042; doi:10.3390/w6041028

Sorption of Emerging Organic Wastewater Contaminants to Four Soils

*  and
Colorado School of Mines, Golden, CO 80401, USA
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 3 March 2014 / Revised: 17 April 2014 / Accepted: 18 April 2014 / Published: 24 April 2014
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Conventional onsite wastewater treatment system design relies on a septic tank and soil treatment unit (STU) for treatment of wastewater and integration of the final effluent into the environment. Organic water contaminants (OWCs), chemicals found in pharmaceutical drugs, detergents, surfactants, and other personal care and cleaning products, have been observed in septic tank effluent and the environment. Sorption of OWC mass to soil is a key mechanism in the removal and retardation of many of these chemicals in effluent as it travels through an STU. The primary purpose of this study was to investigate the relationship between the fraction of organic carbon of soil and the equilibrium sorption partitioning coefficient of a selected group of relevant and diverse OWCs. A secondary goal is to evaluate current methods of modeling the sorption of selected OWCs in soil. Five point Freundlich isotherms were constructed from equilibrium sorption batch tests for target OWCs with four different soils. For soils with organic carbon fraction between 0.021 and 0.054, Kd values were calculated between 60 and 185 for 4-nonylphenol, 75 to 260 for triclosan, 115 to 270 for bisphenol-A, 3 to 255 for 17β-estradiol, 40 to 55 for 17α-ethynylestradiol, and 28 to 70 for estrone. An empirically derived, direct relationship between foc and Kd may be a useful approach to estimating sorption for a soil based on organic carbon content.
Keywords: pharmaceuticals; hormones; sorption; wastewater; soil; organic wastewater contaminants pharmaceuticals; hormones; sorption; wastewater; soil; organic wastewater contaminants
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Roberts, S.; Higgins, C.; McCray, J. Sorption of Emerging Organic Wastewater Contaminants to Four Soils. Water 2014, 6, 1028-1042.

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