Evaluation of Chitin as Natural Coagulant in Water Treatment

  • V. Saritha Department of Environmental Studies, Gitam Institute of Science, Gitam University, Visakhapatnam-530 045, Andhra Pradesh, India.
  • K. Swetha Chowdhary Department of Environmental Studies, Gitam Institute of Science, Gitam University, Visakhapatnam-530 045, Andhra Pradesh, India.
  • B. S.S.S. Harish Kumar Department of Environmental Studies, Gitam Institute of Science, Gitam University, Visakhapatnam-530 045, Andhra Pradesh, India.
Keywords: Alum, Chitin, Coagulation, Turbidity


The use of synthetic coagulants is not regarded as suitable due to health and economic considerations. The present study was aimed to investigate the effects of alum as coagulant in conjunction with chitin as coagulant aid on the removal of turbidity, hardness and Escherichia coli from water. A conventional jar test apparatus was employed for the tests. The experiment was conducted at three different pH conditions of 6, 7 and 8. The dosages chosen were 0.5, 1, 1.5 and 2mg/l. The results showed that turbidity decrease provided also a primary Escherichia coli reduction. Hardness removal efficiency was observed to be 93% at pH 7 with 1mg/l concentration by alum whereas chitin was stable at all the pH ranges showing highest removal at 1 and 1.5mg/l with pH 7. At low concentration chitin showed marginally better performance on hardness. In conclusion, using natural coagulants results in considerable savings in chemicals and sludge handling cost may be achieved.


Download data is not yet available.


[1]. Menkiti, M.C. and Onukwuli, O.D. (2011). Impact of pH Variation on Coag-flocculation Behaviour of Chitin Derived Coag-flocculant in Coal Washery Effluent Medium. Journal of Minerals & Materials Characterization & Engineering, 10 (15):1391-1407.
[2]. WHO (2004). Guidelines for drinking water quality. Third Edition, Vol. 1 Recommendations. Printed in China by Sun Fung. 540.
[3]. Ghebremichael, K.A. (2004). Moringa seed and pumice as alternative natural materials for drinking water treatment, Ph.D., KTH land and water resources engineering.
[4]. Lilliehook, H. (2005). The use of sand filtration on river water flocculates with Moringa oleifera, MASTER DEGREE.
[5]. Ghebremichael, K.A., K.R. Gunaratna, H. Henriksson, H. Brumer and G. Dalhammar (2005). A simple purification and activity assay of the coagulant protein from Moringa oleifera seed. Water Research, 39(11): 2338-2344.
[6]. Muyibi, S. and M.S. Alfugara (2003). Treatment of surface water with Moringa oleifera seed extract and alum- a comparative study using a pilot scale water treatment plant. Intern. J. Environ. Studies, 60(6): 617-626.
[7]. Okuda, T., Baes, A.U., Nishijima, W. and Okada, M. (1999). Improvement of extraction method of coagulation active components from Moringa oleifera seed. Water Research, 33(15): 3373-3378.
[8]. Sharma, P., Kumari, P., Srivastava, M.M. and Srivastava, S. (2006). Removal of cadmium from aqueous system by shelled Moringa oleifera Lam. Seed powder. Bioresource Technology, 97(2): 299–305.
[9]. Katayon, S., Megat, M.N., Asma, M., Ghani, L.A.A., Thamer, A.M., Azni, I., Ahmad, J., Khor, B.C. and Suleyman, A.M. (2006). Effects of storage conditions of Moringa oleifera seeds on its performance in coagulation. Bioresource Technology, 97(13): 1455–1460.
[10]. Santos, A.F.S., Argolo, A.C.C., Coelho, L.C.B.B. and Paiva, P.M.G. (2005). The detection of water soluble lectin and anti-oxidant components from Moringa oleifera seeds. Water Research, 39: 975-980.
[11]. Muyibi, S.A., Noor, M.J.M.M., Leong, T.K. and L.H. Loon (2002). Effects of Oil Extraction from Moringa oleifera Seeds on Coagulation of Turbid Water. Int. J. Environ. Studies, 59(2): 243-254.
[12]. Zhang, J., Zhang, F., Luo, Y. and Yang, H. (2006). A preliminary study on cactus as coagulant in water treatment. Process Biochem., 41(3): 730-733.
[13]. Diaz, A., Rincon, N., Escorihuela, A., Fernandez, N., Chacin, E. and Forster, C.F. (1999). A preliminary evaluation of turbidity removal by natural coagulants indigenous to Venezuela. Process Biochem., 35: 391-395.
[14]. Ozacar, M. and Sengil, A. (2002). The use of tannins from Turkish acorns (Valonia) in water treatment as a coagulant and coagulant aid. Turkish J. Eng. Env. Sci., 26: 255-263.
[15]. Roussy, J., Vooren, M.V., Dempsey, B.A. and Guibal, E. (2005). Influence of chitosan characteristics on the coagulation and the flocculation of bentonite suspensions. Water Research, 39: 3247-3258.
[16]. Lin, S.D., Evans, R.L. and Beuscher, D.B. (1971). Algal Removal by Alum Coagulation. Illinois State. Water Survey, Urbana, Report of Investigation 68.
[17]. Ebeling, J.M., Sibrell, P., Ogden, S.R., Summerfelt, S.T. (2003). Evaluation of chemical coagulation-flocculation aids for the removal of suspended solids and phosphorus from intensive recirculating aquaculture effluent discharge. Aquacultural Engineering, 29: 23-42.
[18]. Divakaran, R. and Pillai, V.N. (2002). Flocculation of river silt using Chitosan. Water. Res., 36: 2414-2418.
[19]. WHO (1996). Water Quality Monitoring- A Practical Guide to the Design and Implementation of Freshwater Quality Studies and Monitoring Programs., Published on behalf of the United Nations Environment Program and the World Health Organization, Geneva. ISBN 0 419 22320 7 (Hbk) 0 419 21730 4 (Pbk).
[20]. Health Protection Branch of Health Canada (2008). Aluminum in Drinking Water and Human Health: The facts about human and aluminum in drinking water. Canada publications. Ottawa, KIA 0K9, 1-4.
[21]. Srinivasan, P.T., Viraraghavan, T. and Subramanian, K.S. (1999). Aluminum in drinking water: An overview. Water SA., 25(1): 47- 55.
[22]. US EPA (2003). National Primary Drinking Water Standards. EPA 816-F-03-016.
[23]. Yarahmadi, M., Hossieni, M., Bina, B., Mahmoudian, M.H., Naimabadie, A. and Shahsavani, A. (2009). Application of Moringa oleifera Seed Extract and Polyaluminum Chloride in Water Treatment. World Applied Sciences Journal, 7 (8): 962-967.
[24]. B. Bina, M.H. Mehdinejad, M. Nikaeen, H. Movahedian Attar (2009). Effectiveness of Chitosan as Natural Coagulant Aid in Treating Turbid Waters. Iran. J. Environ. Health. Sci. Eng., 6 (4): 247-252.
[25]. Li, Q. and Kegley, L. (2005). Assessing the effectiveness and environmental impacts of using natural flocculants to manage turbidity. Oregon Department of Transportation Research Unit, USA.
[26]. Tyagi, V.K., Chopra, A.K., Kazmi, A.A., Kumar, A. (2006). Alternative Microbial Indicators of Faecal Pollution: Current Perspective. Iran. J. Environ. Health. Sci. Eng., 3(3): 205-216
[27]. Qin, C., Li, H., Xiao, Q., Liu, Y., Zhu, J. and Du, Y. (2006). Water-solubility of Chitosan and its antimicrobial activity. Carbohydrate Polymers, 63: 367– 374.
[28]. Bina, B. (1995). The Use of Moringa oleifera Seed as Natural Plant Coagulant in Removal of Clay Particles and E. coli. Water & sewage, 14: 4-12.
How to Cite
Saritha, V., Chowdhary, K., & Kumar, B. (2012). Evaluation of Chitin as Natural Coagulant in Water Treatment. Journal of Advanced Laboratory Research in Biology, 3(2), 109-114. Retrieved from http://e-journal.sospublication.co.in/index.php/jalrb/article/view/109

Most read articles by the same author(s)