Jump to Main Content
Comparison of membrane fouling in ultrafiltration of down-flow and up-flow biological activated carbon effluents
- Ao, Lu, Liu, Wenjun, Qiao, Yang, Li, Cuiping, Wang, Xiaomao
- Frontiers of environmental science & engineering 2018 v.12 no.6 pp. 9
- activated carbon, effluents, fouling, polysaccharides, proteins, turbidity, ultrafiltration
- Fouling during ultrafiltration of down- and up-flow biological activated carbon effluents was investigated to determine the roles of polysaccharides, proteins, and inorganic particles in ultrafiltration membrane fouling. During ultrafiltration of down- flow biological activated carbon effluent, the trans-membrane pressure was £26 kPa and the permeate flux was steady at 46.7 L∙m–²∙h–¹. However, during ultrafiltration of up-flow biological activated carbon effluent, the highest trans-membrane pressure was almost 40 kPa and the permeate flux continuously decreased to 30 L∙m–²∙h–¹. At the end of the filtration period, the normalized membrane fluxes were 0.88 and 0.62 for down- and up-flow biological activated carbon effluents, respectively. The membrane removed the turbidity and polysaccharides content by 47.4% and 30.2% in down- flow biological activated effluent and 82.5% and 22.4% in up-flow biological activated carbon effluent, respectively, but retained few proteins. The retention of polysaccharides was higher on the membrane that filtered the down- flow biological activated effluent compared with that on the membrane that filtered the up-flow biological activated carbon effluent. The polysaccharides on the membranes fouled by up-flow biological activated carbon and down- flow biological activated effluents were spread continuously and clustered, respectively. These demonstrated that the up-flow biological activated carbon effluent fouled the membrane faster. Membrane fouling was associated with a portion of the polysaccharides (not the proteins) and inorganic particles in the feed water. When there was little difference in the polysaccharide concentrations between the feed waters, the fouling extent was exacerbated more by inorganic particles than by polysaccharides.