Color and TOC removal from pulp and paper wastes by ultrafiltration

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Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University


Ultrafiltration studies were conducted to determine a treatment approach to remove color and organic carbon from the pulp and paper wastewaters at the Union Camp Corporation, Franklin, VA.

Analysis of data collected during this research indicate that ultrafiltration can produce an effluent with less than 5 color units and less than 5 mg/L TOC (99% and 97% removal respectively). The data also indicate that biotreatment of the wastes prior to ultrafiltration removes the smaller molecular weight organic compounds, making ultrafiltration more effective.

Pretreatment by pH adjustment and alum coagulation were not effective in improving ultrafiltration performance. Concentration studies indicate that volume reductions up to 95% may be accomplished without excessive membrane fouling. Membrane cleaning with caustic, hypochlorite and detergent produced identical results.

It is expected that ultrafiltration would be a more cost effective method of color and TOC removal than coagulation, and would not require sludge disposal.