Simulating the performance of fixed-bed granular activated carbon adsorbers: Removal of synthetic organic chemicals in the presence of background organic matter

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Granular activated carbon (GAC) adsorption is an effective treatment technology for the removal of synthetic organic chemicals (SOCs) from drinking water supplies. This treatment process can be expensive if not properly designed. Application of mathematical models is an attractive method to evaluate the impact of process variables on process design and performance. Practical guidelines were developed to select an appropriate model framework and to estimate site-specific model parameters to predict GAC adsorber performance. Pilot plant and field-scale data from 11 different studies were utilized to investigate the effectiveness of this approach in predicting adsorber performance in the presence of background organic batter (BOM). These data represent surface and ground water sources from four different countries. The modeling approach was able to adequately describe fixed-bed adsorber performance for the purpose of determining the carbon usage rate and process design variables. This approach is more accurate at predicting bed life in the presence of BOM than the current methods commonly used by practicing engineers. © 2005 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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Water Research