Abstract

Pilot-scale performance in reducing excess iron and arsenic from contaminated groundwater has been systematically reported. Here, a double column unit, the first packed with β-MnO2 and the second with crystalline FeOOH (goethite variety), with filters attached to the outlet of hand-pump tube-wells has been used in the field. Results showed that the filters generate 10,000 to 15,000 BV and 19,000 to 35,000 BV water with iron ≤ 0.3 mg/L and arsenic ≤10 µg/L from groundwater having influent iron and arsenic levels of 3.75 to 7.25 mg/L and 70 to 220 µg/L, respectively. The downflow rate of effluent water was 237.6 to 305.5 L/m2-min. The performance results were achieved with a single charging of the iron and arsenic removal media. Toxicity characteristic leaching procedure (TCLP) tests of the waste (arsenic content: 2.4 g/kg) showed that it is not hazardous to the environment and does not pose any risk to users. Cost evaluation showed $US0.50 to 0.70 per 1000 gallons of treated water and, hence, the technology is cost-effective for countries such as India and Bangladesh.

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