Edyta Łaskawiec 1  
Mariusz Dudziak 1  
Marta Madej 1  
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Institute of Water and Wastewater Engineering, Silesian University of Technology, Konarskiego 18, 44-100 Gliwice, Poland
Publish date: 2017-07-01
J. Ecol. Eng. 2017; 18(4):130–136
The paper has determined the suitability of membrane processes (UF ultrafiltration, UF, and nanofiltration, NF) for the purification of waste streams, so-called backwash water, obtained from washing filtration beds in a swimming pool water system. The backwash water samples were taken from the circuits located in two indoor facilities with a different purpose of the basins. Moreover, the samples were characterized by varying quality, as described by selected physicochemical parameters (such as turbidity and ultraviolet absorbance UV254). Commercial membranes were used for the tests. The transport-separation properties of the membranes were determined based on the volumetric flux of the permeate. In addition, backwash water samples before and after the membrane process were subjected to toxicological assessment using the Microtox® screening test. The performed processes contributed to a significant reduction in turbidity and the value of UV254 ultraviolet absorbance, both in the ultrafiltration and nanofiltration processes. Whereas, significant differences in transport properties were noted within individual processes. A great influence of backwash water quality, including physicochemical parameters, on the course and results of the membrane filtration processes was demonstrated. In all of the nanofiltration cycles carried out, the removal of the toxic properties of the backwash water with respect to bacteria in the Microtox® test was found. Nevertheless, samples with high values of resultant physicochemical parameters after the ultrafiltration process were still characterized by high toxicity. Pressure membrane processes show high effectiveness in the removal of contaminants from backwash water. However, it is necessary to introduce supporting processes aimed at reducing membrane pore blocking by deposits and organic compounds, and in the case of ultrafiltration, assuring the safety of the purified stream in terms of the toxicological effect.