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Ultrasonics Sonochemistry 10 (2003) 255–264

Hybrid cavitation methods for water disinfection: simultaneous use of chemicals with cavitation

K.K. Jyoti, A.B. Pandit *

Chemical Engineering Division, Department of Chemical Technology, University of Mumbai, Matunga, Mumbai 400019, India

Received 7 October 2002; accepted 10 March 2003


This study brings out the potential efficacy of hybrid techniques for water disinfection. The techniques studied include, hydro- dynamic cavitation, acoustic cavitation and treatment with chemicals such as ozone and hydrogen peroxide. The phenomena of cavitation which involves formation, growth and violent collapse of vapor bubbles in a liquid media is known to generate a high intensity pressure which affects the cell and microorganism viability. The hybrid technique which combines hydrodynamic cavi- tation, acoustic cavitation, hydrogen peroxide and/or ozone appears to be an attractive alternative to a single technique for the reduction in the heterotropic plate count bacteria as well as indicator microorganisms like the Total coliforms, Fecal coliforms and Fecal streptococci.

Ó 2003 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.

Keywords: Disinfection; Cavitation; Hydrogen peroxide; Ozone; Heterotropic plate count bacteria; Indicator microorganisms

1. Introduction

A variety of physical and chemical techniques are routinely used for potable water disinfection including chlorination [1], ozonation [2] and ultraviolet light [3]. Hybrid techniques employ the combination of various oxidation techniques, which can result in the generation of sufficient hydroxyl radicals and their oxidizing po- tential for water purification. These processes are known as the advanced oxidation processes (AOP) [4]. The OH radical is a powerful oxidizing radical, second only to fluorine [5] and is therefore appealing in its use for water treatment. Advanced oxidation systems generally com- bine ozone, hydrogen peroxide and ultraviolet radiation e.g. O3 and H2O2, O3 and UV, and H2O2 and UV.

A number of hybrid techniques have been reported in the literature which include the combination of UV radiation and ozonation for the treatment of humic acids [3] and low molecular weight organic compounds [4], combination of ultrasonication and ozonation for aromatic compound degradation [6], inactivation of

* Corresponding author. Tel.: +91-22-414-5616; fax: +91-22-414- 5614.

E-mail address: (A.B. Pandit).

microorganisms [7] and disinfection of water [1]. The advanced oxidation process (PEROXONE) which is a combination of ozone and hydrogen peroxide has been used for disinfection of water [8].

However, chemical disinfection techniques suffer from disadvantages like formation of possibly carcinogenic byproducts [6]. Therefore there is a need for developing additional disinfection processes, which could eliminate or reduce the use of these disinfecting chemicals.

In this article we investigate the viability of ultra- sonication, hydrodynamic cavitation and hybrid cavi- tation processes involving the use of chemicals like hydrogen peroxide and ozone along with cavitation. Previous studies have indicated that these techniques can inactivate a wide range of microorganisms and ultrasonication [7] and hydrodynamic cavitation [8] which are essentially different means of generating cavi- tating conditions i.e. using sound and flow energies respectively, have been particularly useful for cell dis- ruption. Cavitation is a phenomena of formation, growth and collapse of microbubbles within a liquid. If this phenomena occurs due to the passage of high fre- quency sound waves then it is called acoustic cavitation (ultrasonication) and if it occurs due to the pressure variations in the flowing liquid due to the change in the

1350-4177/03/$ - see front matter Ó 2003 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved. doi:10.1016/S1350-4177(03)00095-6

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