Determination of the effectiveness of UV radiation as a means of disinfection of metalworking fluids

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Department of Biological Sciences


Microbial contamination of metalworking fluids (MWFs) causes biofouling and degradation and is also associated with several health hazards. Development of an effective control method is therefore essential to reduce microbial loading inMWFs. The present study investigated the efficacy and rapidity of UV radiation as a means of disinfection of MWFs under laboratory conditions to determine parameters that could be used to design an in-line UVreactor for enclosed machines. High and low concentrations (104-107 CFU/mL) of three indicator bacteria, Pseudomonas fluorescens , P. oleovorans subsp. lubricantis and Mycobacterium chelonae, were evaluated both as pure cultures and in combinations. The target organisms were irradiated with a high intensity (192 μW/cm2, 55 W) UV lamp for different exposure time under both static and mixed conditions. For these Pseudomonas species with high concentrations of cells under static conditions, only a 56 % reduction was observed within 10 min of exposure, whereas under mixed condition, a 99 % reduction was achieved within 2 min of exposure. In contrast only 74%reduction was observed for M. chelonae. However, with low concentrations of cells under mixed conditions, a 99.99 % and 82 % reduction in viable count was observed for the Pseudomonas sp. and M. chelonae, respectively. Similar results were observed for mixed culture combinations. Based on these observations high intensity UV in combination with mixing could be successfully used as a means of disinfection of MWFs within a short exposure time and the parameters obtained from the study could be implemented to design a plug flow UV reactor.

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Annals of Microbiology