Permeability of low molecular weight organics through nanofiltration membranes

The removal of natural organic matter (NOM) using nanofiltration (NF) is increasingly becoming an option for drinking water treatment. Low molecular weight LMW organic compounds are nevertheless only partially retained by such membranes. Bacterial regrowth and biofilm formation in the drinking water distribution system is favoured by the presence of such compounds, which in this context are considered as the assimilable organic carbon (AOC). In this study, the question of whether NF produces microbiologically stable water was addressed. Two NF membranes (cut-off of about 300 Da) were tested with different natural and synthetic water samples in a cross-flow filtration unit. NOM was characterised by liquid chromatography with organic carbon detection (LC-OCD) using a size-exclusion column in addition to specific organic acid measurements, while AOC was measured in a batch growth bioassay.

Published in:
Water Research, 41, 3968-3976

 Record created 2011-07-01, last modified 2018-09-13

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