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Cotton-Textile Wastewater Management: Investigating Different Treatment Methods

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Abstract:

The cotton-textile industry consumes significant amounts of water during manufacturing, creating high volumes of wastewater needing treatment. The organic-load concentration of cotton-textile wastewater is equivalent to a medium-strength municipal wastewater; the color of the water, however, remains a significant environmental issue. This research, in cooperation with a cotton-textile manufacturer, investigated different treatment methods and different combinations of methods to identify the most cost-effective approaches to treating textile wastewater. Although activated-sludge is economical, it can only be used as part of an integrated wastewater management system because it cannot decolorize wastewater. Coagulation/flocculation methods are able to decolorize cotton-wastewater; however, this process creates high amounts of wastewater solids, thus significantly increasing total treatment costs. Chemical oxidation is an environmentally friendly technique that can only be used as a polishing step because of high operating costs. Anaerobic digestion in a series of fixed-bed bioreactors with immobilized methanogens using acetic acid as a substrate and a pH-control agent followed by activated-sludge treatment was found to be the most cost-effective and environmentally safe cotton-textile wastewater management approach investigated.

Keywords: Wastewater management; activated-sludge; anaerobic digestion; bioreactor; chemical coagulation; chemical oxidation; costs; cotton-textiles

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2175/106143011X13203357278381

Publication date: January 1, 2012

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  • Water Environment Research® (WER®) publishes peer-reviewed research papers, research notes, state-of-the-art and critical reviews on original, fundamental and applied research in all scientific and technical areas related to water quality, pollution control, and management. An annual Literature Review provides a review of published books and articles on water quality topics from the previous year.

    Published as: Sewage Works Journal, 1928 - 1949; Sewage and Industrial Wastes, 1950 - 1959; Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, 1959 - Oct 1989; Research Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, Nov 1989 - 1991; Water Environment Research, 1992 - present.
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