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Estuarine capacity in removal of trace metals from contaminated river water, Southern Caspian Sea

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In the present investigation, the flocculation of dissolved Cd, Cu, Ni, Pb, Mn and Zn with initial concentrations of 1, 2.5 and 5 mg/L in Tadjan River water during mixing with the Caspian Sea water has been studied in order to determine estuarine capacity to remove dissolved metals in the accidental contamination of the river. The flocculation process was investigated on a series of mixtures with salinities ranging from 0.1 to 11 p.p.t. The flocculation rates were indicative of the nonconservative behaviour of Cd, Cu, Ni, Pb, Mn and Zn during estuarine mixing. The order of the final flocculation rate of dissolved metals at 1, 2.5 and 5 mg/L of initial metal concentrations in the river water is as follows:Cu (99%)>Cd (95%)>Zn (88%)>Mn (85%)>Pb (83%)>Ni (73%), Cu(95.6%)>Pb(92.4%)>Cd (90%)>Zn(88.4%)>Mn (81.6%)>Ni(78.8%) and Cd (100%)>Cu(88%)>Ni (85.2%)>Pb (84%)>Zn (83.2%)>Mn (81.2%), respectively. The results also revealed that removal of dissolved metals is not influenced by pH changes and precipitation processes. The flocculation rates revealed that the overall dissolved metal pollution loads may be reduced to about 70% up to about more than 90% during estuarine mixing of Tadjan River with the Caspian Sea water.
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Keywords: Caspian Sea; Tadjan River; dissolved heavy metals; estuarine mixing; flocculation

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Hydraulics and Environment, College of Civil Engineering, Iran University of Science and Technology, Narmak, Tehran, Iran; and 2: Faculty of Environment, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran

Publication date: 01 September 2008

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