Improved removal of arsenic from groundwater using pre-corroded steel and iron tailored granular activated carbon

J. Zou, F. S. Cannon, W. Chen, B. A. Dempsey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

The authors have combined corrosion of steel fittings or perforated sheets with granular activated carbon (GAC) that had been pre-treated with Fe(III)-citrate, to produce an innovative and low-maintenance technique for removing arsenic from groundwater. Removal of arsenic was measured using two GAC column configurations: rapid small scale column tests (RSSCT's) and mini-column tests. Independent variables included pH, pre-corrosion procedure, and idling of the column (i.e. intentionally stopping flow for defined times in order to create reducing conditions). Use of corroded steel plus pre-treated GAC removed arsenic to below 10 μg/L for up to 248,000 bed volumes (BV) at pH 6, compared to 7,000 BVs for pre-treated GAC without pre-corroded steel. Performance was not as good at pH 6.5 or 7.5. Idling the system recovered the iron corrosion ability by reducing the passive Fe(III) layer on pre-corroded steel surface, as a result the BVs to arsenic breakthrough was doubled. But idling also caused brief periods of arsenic and iron release after restart, due to reductive dissolution of arsenic-containing ferric oxides. GAC was also effective as filtration media for removal of iron (hydr)oxide particles (and associated arsenic) that was released from the pre-corroded iron.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)441-453
Number of pages13
JournalWater Science and Technology
Volume61
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2010

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Water Science and Technology

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