Chemical structures of extra- and intra-cellular algogenic organic matters as precursors to the formation of carbonaceous disinfection byproducts

Lap Cuong Hua, Jr Lin Lin, Pei Chung Chen, Ch-Hpin Huang*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations

Abstract

Algal eutrophication in reservoirs is frequently accompanied by a remarkable increase in the concentration of algogenic organic matter (AOM). Because AOM is well-known as an important precursor to disinfection byproducts (DBPs) in drinking water, algal eutrophication poses severe concerns for public health. This study aimed to characterize the chemical properties of AOM from two major origins, i.e. extra- (EOM) and intra-cellular organic matter (IOM), of a commonly found green alga Chlorella sp. as precursors to trihalomethanes (THMs) and haloacetic acids (HAAs). Particularly, the corresponding relation between the chemical functional structure of EOM and IOM and their THM and HAA formation potential (THMFP and HAAFP) was comprehensively investigated. Results show that IOM chiefly comprised of aromatic and other aliphatic protein-like materials (high organic nitrogen content) those have high activity for chlorine substitution (high UV253/UV203 value) due to the high hydroxyl and amide contents in its chemical structures. EOM alternatively exhibited the characteristics of humic- and fulvic-like materials accompanying with high DOC/DON ratio and aromaticity. However, the chemical structure of EOM had a low tendency for chlorine substitution (low UV253/UV203 value); it was also accompanied by a considerable content of carboxylic moisture, which likely resulted in an unfavorable substitution reaction of EOM with chlorine. As a result, the carbonaceous DBP formation potential (C-DBPFP) showed that IOM yielded higher levels of both THMFP and HAAFP than that yielded by EOM.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1022-1030
Number of pages9
JournalChemical Engineering Journal
Volume328
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2017

Keywords

  • Algogenic organic matter
  • Disinfection byproducts
  • Eutrophication
  • Green algae

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