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Multicausal Analysis on Water Deterioration Processes Present in a Drinking Water Treatment System

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The fluctuation of water turbidity has been studied during summer in the settling tanks of a drinking water treatment plant. Results from the multiple cause‐effect model indicated that five main pathways interactively influenced thequalityof tank water. During rain, turbidity levels increased mainly as a result of decreasing pH and anaerobic reactions (partial effect = 68%). Increasing water temperature combined with dissolved oxygen concentration (partial effect = 64%) was the key parameterforcontrolling decreases in water turbidity during nighttime periods after a rainy day. The dominant factor influencing increases in turbidity during sunny daytime periods was algal blooms (partial effect = 86%). However, short-circuiting waves (partial effect = 77%) was the main cause for increased nighttime water turbidityafter a sunny day. The trade offbetween regulatory pathways was responsible for environmental changes, and the outcome was determined by the comparative strengths of each pathway.

Keywords: algal bloom; multiple causality analysis; sedimentation; thermal density currents; turbidity; water supply

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1:  State Key Laboratory of Urban Water Resource and Environment, School of Municipal and Environmental Engineering, Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin, China. 2:  Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, National University of Singapore, Singapore.

Publication date: 2013-03-01

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  • Water Environment Research (WER) is published monthly, including an annual Literature Review. A subscription to WER includes access to the latest content back to 1992, as well as access to fast track articles. An individual subscription is valid for 12 months from month of purchase.

    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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