If coagulation is not completely successful and produces aggregates which are too small, fouling may increase. In some cases, a deep-bed filter could perhaps provide a solution. The paper examines these effects using experimental results for different waters. Activated sludge effluents, stormy seawater containing microalgae and spent filter backwash water (SFBW) were coagulated by alum or ferric chloride. Sand filtration tests were carried out. Tests were performed in a membrane filtration stirred cell, filtration pilot plant equipped with SDI analyzer (seawater) and pilot UF plant (SFBW). For activated sludge effluent, alum residual ratio curves of turbidity and total particle count (TPC) followed one another. With ferric chloride, low coagulant dosage showed negative turbidity removal. Contact granular filtration reduced membrane fouling intensity. Increasing the dose resulted in higher improvement in membrane flux. For seawater, a filter run period under storm conditions reached 35 hours with satisfactory filtrate quality. An iron chloride dose of 0.3 mg/l during normal conditions and 0.5 mg/l for stormy condition should be injected, mixed well before the filters, while maintaining 10 m/hr filtration rate and pH 6.8 value. For SFBW, alum flocculation pretreatment of SFBW was effective in reducing turbidity, TPC, viruses and protozoa. SFBW settling prior to flocculation did not enhance turbidity and TPC removal. The largest remaining particle fraction after alum flocculation was 3-10 μm in size, both Cryptosporidium and Giardia are found in this size range. Coagulation enhanced the removal of small size particles, a positive impact on reducing membrane fouling potential.

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