Evaluation of FeCl3 and PAC for the potabilization of water with high content of color and low turbidity

Keywords: Ferric chloride (FeCl3), Aluminum polychloride (PAC), Humic substances (SH), Color, Turbidity


The water source for supply from moorland is characterized by its high color and low turbidity, which represents an inconvenience to be considered in most water treatment plants. Internationally, studies have been carried out in this regard, but in general, the proposed solutions are costly and do not fully adapt to this type of Colombian water sources (a country in which no research is recorded). The purpose of this work was the evaluation of FeCl3 as a primary coagulant and PAC (Poly Aluminium Chloride) as auxiliary on a laboratory scale for the water purification with high color and low turbidity. The jar test was performed with FeCl3, PAC, FeCl3 + PAC as a coagulation aid and FeCl3 + PAC as a flocculation aid. The parameters evaluated were pH, color, and turbidity, before and after the treatments; with a dose range for FeCl3 between 36-42 mg/L and for PAC between 0.2-0.5 mg/L. The results displayed that in terms of color removal, the FeCl3 + PAC combination as a coagulation aid showed the highest efficiency among the treatments studied (86.9%), while for turbidity removal the yield reached 80.2%. Likewise, it was demonstrated that this alternative represents a cost savings when compared to PAC as sole coagulant (between 25.5 - 34.2%), depending on the treated flow. Regarding compliance with Colombian regulations in force, the maximum permissible values are (Color = 15 UPC, Turbidity = 2 UNT), with the exception of pH that must be between 6.5-9.0, and that must be stabilized before to send the treated water through the distribution network. 

Author Biographies

Jeffrey Yanza-López, Universidad Manuela Beltrán, Colombia

Ingeniero Ambiental, Especialización en Agua y Saneamiento Ambiental, Escuela de Posgrados, Universidad Manuela Beltrán, Bogotá-Colombia, Jeffrey.yanza@estudiantes.umb.edu.co

Robert Rivera-Hernández, Universidad Manuela Beltrán, Colombia

Ingeniero Civil, Especialización en Agua y Saneamiento Ambiental, Escuela de Posgrados, Universidad Manuela Beltrán, Bogotá-Colombia, robert.rivera@estudiantes.umb.edu.co

Luisa Gómez-Torres, Universidad Manuela Beltrán, Colombia

PhD en Ingeniería Química, Grupo de Sistemas y Recursos Ambientales Sostenibles (Syras), Universidad Manuela Beltrán, Bogotá-Colombia, luisa.gomez@docentes.umb.edu.co

Carlos Zafra-Mejía, *, Universidad Distrital Francisco José de Caldas, Colombia

PhD en Ingeniería Ambiental, Facultad de Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales, Universidad Distrital Francisco José de Caldas Bogotá-Colombia, czafra@udistrital.edu.co
*Corresponding author


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How to Cite
Yanza-López, J., Rivera-Hernández, R., Gómez-Torres, L., & Zafra-Mejía, C. (2019). Evaluation of FeCl3 and PAC for the potabilization of water with high content of color and low turbidity. TecnoLógicas, 22(45), 9-21. https://doi.org/10.22430/22565337.1085


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