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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle

Characterizing a Newly Designed Steel-Wool-Based Household Filter for Safe Drinking Water Provision: Hydraulic Conductivity and Efficiency for Pathogen Removal

1
Department of Applied Geology, University of Göttingen, Goldschmidtstraße 3, D-37077 Göttingen, Germany
2
Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Sciences, University of Douala, B.P. Douala 24157, Cameroon
3
Department of Sedimentology & Environmental Geology, University of Göttingen, Goldschmidtstraße 3, D-37077 Göttingen, Germany
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Processes 2019, 7(12), 966; https://doi.org/10.3390/pr7120966
Received: 23 November 2019 / Revised: 16 December 2019 / Accepted: 16 December 2019 / Published: 17 December 2019
This study characterizes the decrease of the hydraulic conductivity (permeability loss) of a metallic iron-based household water filter (Fe0 filter) for a duration of 12 months. A commercial steel wool (SW) is used as Fe0 source. The Fe0 unit containing 300 g of SW was sandwiched between two conventional biological sand filters (BSFs). The working solution was slightly turbid natural well water polluted with pathogens (total coliform = 1950 UFC mL−1) and contaminated with nitrate ([NO3] = 24.0 mg L−1). The system was monitored twice per month for pH value, removal of nitrate, coliforms, and turbidity, the iron concentration, as well as the permeability loss. Results revealed a quantitative removal of coliform (>99%), nitrate (>99%) and turbidity (>96%). The whole column effluent depicted drinking water quality. The permeability loss after one year of operation was about 40%, and the filter was still producing 200 L of drinking water per day at a flow velocity of 12.5 L h1. A progressive increase of the effluent pH value was also recorded from about 5.0 (influent) to 8.4 at the end of the experiment. The effluent iron concentration was constantly lower than 0.2 mg L−1, which is within the drinking-water quality standards. This study presents an affordable design that can be one-to-one translated into the real world to accelerate the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals for safe drinking water. View Full-Text
Keywords: biosand filter; household filter; pathogen removal; permeability loss; zero-valent iron biosand filter; household filter; pathogen removal; permeability loss; zero-valent iron
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Tepong-Tsindé, R.; Ndé-Tchoupé, A.I.; Noubactep, C.; Nassi, A.; Ruppert, H. Characterizing a Newly Designed Steel-Wool-Based Household Filter for Safe Drinking Water Provision: Hydraulic Conductivity and Efficiency for Pathogen Removal. Processes 2019, 7, 966.

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