State Water Resources Research Institute Program

Project ID: 2007ND142B
Title: Fractionation of Natural Organic Matter in Water
Project Type: Research
Start Date: 3/01/2007
End Date: 2/29/2008
Congressional District: 1
Focus Categories: Treatment, Water Supply, Methods
Keywords: Resin fractionation, Natural Organic Matter, Water Treatment, Extraction Technique, Total Organic Carbon
Principal Investigator: Eakalak, Khan (North Dakota State University)
Federal Funds: $ 2,000
Non-Federal Matching Funds: $ 4,000
Abstract: The Moorhead, Minnesota and Fargo, North Dakota Water Treatment Plants (MWTP and FWTP) use the Red River water as a primary source to produce drinking water for the residents of Fargo-Moorhead area. Fargo and Moorhead are located on either side of the Red River of the North forming a twin-city area. Understanding the characteristics and composition of NOM in the drinking water source is helpful for identifying the problematic NOM fractions (the fractions that have potential to form carcinogenic disinfection byproducts). Fractionation and characterization of NOM from the Red River have never been conducted. Total organic carbon (TOC) is used to measure the performance of NOM removal at different treatment stages at MWTP. The TOC values of bulk water can indicate the organic content but do not provide information on the treatability of the different types of organic molecules. NOM fractionation could elucidate the effects of water treatment processes at MWTP on NOM composition. The main scope of this study is to fractionate and characterize NOM from the Red River and to investigate the removal of each NOM fraction along the treatment train of MWTP. A fractionation procedure developed to differentiate NOM into six fractions based on polarity and acid/base/neutral properties will be applied to the samples. This project will provide the information on the composition and characteristics of NOM in the Red River water and the efficiencies of treatment units at MWTP for removal of different NOM fractions. With this information, appropriate operational adjustments on treatment processes can be made to minimize the THMs' and HAAs' precursor fractions to reduce the health risk and to comply with the DBP regulation. On a big picture, the new fractionation technique, which is much less time consuming, will benefit water utilities and researchers throughout the world. The technique is also useful for other applications related to NOM such as groundwater recharge and wastewater reclamation. Information on the composition and chemical properties of NOM fractions can provide a better understanding of NOM behavior in natural and engineered water systems.

Progress/Completion Report, PDF

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