Removal of boron from ceramic industry wastewater by adsorption-flocculation mechanism using Palm Oil Mill Boiler (POMB) bottom ash and polymer

Autores: Mei Fong Chong|Kah Peng Lee|Hui Jiun Chieng|Ili Izyan Syazwani Binti Ramli
Fuente: Wat. Res.
43(13), 3326-34

Boron is extensively used in the ceramic industry for enhancing mechanical strength of the tiles. The discharge of boron containing wastewater to the environment causes severe pollution problems. Boron is also dangerous for human consumption and causes organisms– reproductive impediments if the safe intake level is exceeded. Current methods to remove boron include ion-exchange, membrane filtration, precipitation-coagulation, biological and chemical treatment. These methods are costly to remove boron from the wastewater and hence infeasible for industrial wastewater treatment. In the present research, adsorption-flocculation mechanism is proposed for boron removal from ceramic wastewater by using Palm Oil Mill Boiler (POMB) bottom ash and long chain polymer or flocculant. Ceramic wastewater is turbid and milky in color which contains 15 mg/L of boron and 2000 mg/L of suspended solids. The optimum operating conditions for boron adsorption on POMB bottom ash and flocculation using polymer were investigated in the present research. Adsorption isotherm of boron on bottom ash was also investigated to evaluate the adsorption capacity. Adsorption isotherm modeling was conducted based on Langmuir and Freundlich isotherms. The results show that coarse POMB bottom ash with particle size larger than 2 mm is a suitable adsorbent where boron is removed up to 80% under the optimum conditions (pH = 8.0, dosage = 40 g bottom ash / 300 ml wastewater, residence time = 1 hr). The results also show that KP 1200 B cationic polymer is effective in flocculating the suspended solids while AP 120 C anionic polymer is effective in flocculating the bottom ash. The combined cationic and anionic polymers is able to clarify the ceramic wastewater under the optimum conditions (dosage of KP 1200 B cationic polymer = 100 mg/L, dosage of AP 120 C anionic polymer = 50 mg/L, mixing speed = 200 rpm). Under the optimum operating conditions, the boron and suspended solids concentration of the treated wastewater were reduced to 3 mg/L and 5 mg/L respectively, satisfying the discharge requirement by Malaysia Department of Environment (DOE). The modeling study shows that the adsorption isotherm of boron onto POMB bottom ash conformed to the Freundlich Isotherm. The proposed method is suitable for boron removal in ceramic wastewater especially in regions where POMB bottom ash is abundant.

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