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Title: Abiotic removal of phosphate from surface water – bench scale to meso-scale
Authors: Jung, Carina M.
Eberly, Jed O.
Blakeney, G. Alon.
Knotek-Smith., Heather M.
Keywords: Nutrient pollution of water
Algal blooms
Water quality
Publisher: Environmental Laboratory (U.S.)
Engineer Research and Development Center (U.S.)
Series/Report no.: Technical Report (Engineer Research and Development Center (U.S.)) ; no. ERDC/EL TR-18-12
Abstract: Cultural eutrophication is a primary cause of impairment to recreational and commercially important waterways. Nutrient loading of waterways through release of fertilizers and sewage, among other substrates high in growth-limiting substrates (phosphorus, nitrogen, and carbon) allows for unchecked growth of photosynthesizers such as blue-green algae (cyanobacteria). Significant cyanobacterial growth may result in plant die-off, hypoxia, or anoxia, and the proliferation of harmful algal blooms (HABs). Methods exist to bind and inactivate nutrients like phosphorous but these do not remove nutrients from the waterway. This report presents a passive method for physical removal of phosphate (PO₄) by moving water over reduced iron plates, yielding an iron oxide-phosphate complex that can be passively filtered with sand and activated carbon. Both lab- and field-scale reactors were tested and compared for phosphate removal rates and performance was evaluated for treating a small contained pond with high phosphate. The reactor configuration presented herein removed phosphate from the experimental pond at a rate of 0.1004 mg PO₄/L/day. The effectiveness of the treatment method, the ease of installation, low cost, and accessibility of the reactor materials makes this technology an attractive option when binding of free phosphate in surface waters is required.
Description: Technical Report
Gov't Doc #: ERDC/EL TR-18-12
Rights: Approved for Public Release; Distribution is Unlimited
Size: 32 pages / 1.77 Mb
Types of Materials: PDF/A
Appears in Collections:Technical Report

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