Abstract

In this study the removal of phosphates from solution by Donnan dialysis and by adsorption onto calcium alginate beads were studied separately and then together. This hybrid process was conducted in order to benefit from each process, and it is an original and new combination. First, the Donnan dialysis process was performed with different parameters: the type of counter-ion, the concentration of the counter-ion, the initial phosphate concentration, the pH of the solution and the choice of anion-exchange membranes. Donnan dialysis achieved 68% and 12.5% phosphorus removal with AMX and AFN membranes respectively. Then a preliminary study into the adsorption of phosphate onto calcium alginate beads was carried out. A full factor design was applied in order to determine the effect of the main parameters and their mutual interactions for the adsorption process. The removal of phosphate onto calcium alginate beads reached 82.5%. Finally, coupling Donnan dialysis with adsorption onto calcium alginate beads for the removal of phosphate reached 89.5% with the AMX membrane. This hybrid process can be considered to be a solution for improving the contact time and for enhancing the removal of phosphate by 10% compared to adsorption onto calcium alginate.

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