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How to Remove Phosphate from Surface Water

Phosphate removal is essential to ensure the health and safety of the public and keep the environment safe. Elevated phosphorus levels can cause harm to animal life, and you will prevent eutrophication by eliminating phosphorus from water.

Even though phosphorus is an essential element, high levels can cause several complications in lakes, streams, and coastal regions. Eutrophication is a common issue caused by elevated phosphorus and can cause a significant problem to a healthy marine ecosystem.

Surface water contains high phosphorus levels, and you should reduce its levels before discharging it into local streams. Below we discuss how to remove phosphate from surface water;

How to Remove Phosphate from Surface Water

There are different ways to remove phosphate from surface water, and the most effective one depends on the waste water’s characteristics. Below we discuss how to achieve a proper phosphate removal from surface water.

  1. Chemical Precipitation

Chemical precipitation is also called chemical phosphate removal, and it removes inorganic phosphates from water by introducing a coagulant. Calcium, aluminum, or iron are used during chemical precipitation to create a phosphorous precipitate that cleans water.

The most common chemical additives include lime since it reacts with the water’s alkalinity to raise its PH. Hydrated or aluminum sulfate is also common in precipitating phosphates.

1. Physical Removal

Physical phosphate removal can be used alone or mixed with other phosphorus removal tactics. The main types of physical removal include sand filtration and membrane technologies. One typical example of physical phosphate removal includes retrofitting plants using a phosphate membrane technology.

2. Biological Removal

Biological phosphate removal is also called secondary phosphorus removal, and it is an effective method. The main benefits of removing phosphates biologically are decreased sludge production and low chemical costs than traditional precipitation.

Biological phosphorus removal entails a bacterium incorporating phosphates into the cell biomass. The reactor configuration offers the polyphosphate organisms an added advantage over others, enabling them to consume and grow the present phosphorus.

Bacteria can accumulate in the following aerobic phase, causing a massive polyphosphate in the cells. Due to different cellular components like membrane phospholipids, all bacteria forms have a small phosphorus amount due to various cellular components.

Health Effects of Phosphates

Phosphates are common in the environment and are essential substances to the body because they are a section of DNA materials and contribute to energy distribution. Phosphate is a crucial requirement, but too much of it can cause health issues.

How to Clean Surface Water

Due to the increased cost of drinking water, many industries prefer to treat surface water. Surface water must be adequately treated before it achieves the right quality since it consists of bacteria, algae, and organic matter that creates a foul odor and taste.

The two common ways used to clean surface water are;

  • Conventional treatment– including sedimentation, clarification, and sand filtration
  • Advanced treatment– based on ultrafiltration technology.

Final Thoughts 

Many companies are turning to surface water due to the increased cost of drinking water. The above article has discussed how to clean surface water correctly, and you can contact us for more information.

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