Desalination 157 (2003) 81–86

Comparison between nanofiltration and ozonation
of biologically treated textile wastewater for its reuse
in the industry
A. Bes-Piá, J.A. Mendoza-Roca*, L. Roig-Alcover, A. Iborra-Clar,
M.I. Iborra-Clar, M.I. Alcaina-Miranda
Department of Chemical and Nuclear Engineering, Universidad Politécnica of Valencia,
Camino de Vera s/n, 46071 Valencia, Spain
Tel. +34 (96) 387-96 33; Fax +34 (96) 387-7639; email:

Received 23 December 2002; accepted 30 December 2002

This work is focused on the advanced treatment of the biologically treated wastewater of a textile plant. Nowadays
the factory effluent is treated by an activated sludge process carried out after the wastewater neutralization. The
wastewater treatment plant effluent is not still appropriate for its reuse because of the residual COD and conductivity.
Both nanofiltration experiments at different operating conditions and oxidation reactions with ozone and ozone/UV
irradiation were performed to evaluate the final water quality for its reuse.
Keywords: Nanofiltration; Ozonation; Textile wastewater; Reuse

1. Introduction
The environmental impact of the textile
industry is associated with its high water consumption as well as by the colour, variety and
amount of chemicals which are released in the
wastewater [1]. Conventional treatment methods
*Corresponding author.

for textile wastewater are mainly physicochemical or biological treatments. The quality of
the treated wastewater can be improved if
advanced processes are combined with them.
With adsorption, biorefractory compounds can
be removed. Membrane technologies (nanofiltration and reverse osmosis) are able to separate
both biorefractory organic compounds and

Presented at the European Conference on Desalination and the Environment: Fresh Water for All, Malta, 4–8 May 2003.
European Desalination Society, International Water Association.

0011-9164/03/$– See front matter © 2003 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved

regulation valve. permeate stream. On the contrary. • Selection of the nanofiltration membrane and the operating conditions to achieve the best permeate quality. It has been proved that nanofiltration could be a feasible technique for this [2. 13. 8. tops and flocks of different fibres. 3. security valve. 7. 1. 10. Material and methods Firstly. Fig. dyeing and finishing textile plant. Objectives The objectives of this work were the following: • Study of the combination of activated sludge process with nanofiltration in order to reuse water in a printing. Both ozone and hydroxyl radicals are strong oxidants and are capable of oxidising compounds such as dyes. 12. 2 14 3 4 13 1 12 8 5 6 7 9 10 9’ 11 Fig.3]. hanks. The next step consisted in analysing the COD. manometer. The most commonly used oxidizers are ozone. 4. heat exchanger. each one with 30 cm2 of active surface. rejection stream. Ciardelli et al. The aim of that is to accomplish an increase in wastewater biodegradability. wastewater from activated sludge process was prefiltered to remove suspension solids. 1. 5. Regarding the ozone application after the biological treatment. The main problem of theses techniques is the reject stream management. Bes-Piá et al. [7] concluded that 30 g/m3 ozone doses were sufficient to have good results in terms of colour removal for contact times of about 60 min. The variation of the permeate flux and COD and conductivity removal were studied as a function of the transmembrane pressure and the feed flow rate. conductivity and pH of the prefiltered samples. Nanofiltration experiments were performed in a laboratory plant with a membrane system of four plane membranes. 2. ozone reacts with a great number of organic compounds in two different ways: by direct oxidation as molecular ozone or by indirect reaction through formation of secondary oxidants like free radical species in particular the hydroxyl radical [4]. thermometer. speed control. 2. / Desalination 157 (2003) 81–86 salinity. The membranes tested were Desal DK-5 from Osmonics and NF-90 from Dow Chemical. • Comparison between the two advanced treatments mentioned above from the point of view of the final water quality. . feed pump. Several authors reported about the application of membrane technologies to obtain water for reuse from textile wastewater treated previously with physico-chemical or biological treatment. 6. 14. skeins. 3. In the bibliography a great number of references about textile wastewater ozonation before biological treatment can be found [5. 9–9’. stirring. 1 shows a scheme of the nanofiltration plant. Scheme of NF laboratory plant. 11. Once dissolved in water. This process was applied to wastewaters coming from a filling and dyeing plant used to dye fabrics.82 A. Ozone is a powerful oxidant for water and wastewater treatment. chemical oxidation does not produce any waste. feed tank. NF module. • Study of the combination of activated sludge with chemical oxidation using ozone and ozone/ UV radiation.6]. filtration system. degradating organic compounds. regulation valve. Fenton’s reagent (H2O2/Fe2+) and a combination of theses oxidizers with UV irradiation.

experiments with three different transmembrane pressures (0. The ozonation experiments were carried out in a laboratory plant consisting of three ozone generators with a maximum ozone production of 4 g/h each one and a contact reactor of 25 L. mS/cm COD.15 and 0. In each experiment 45 L of biologically treated wastewater were ozonated.80 36.4 m3/h) at 25ºC were performed.3 and 0.64 47.00 .15 78.40 50. and three different feed flow rates (0.19 38. 2 shows a photograph of the plant.1.06 18.31 6.33 3. % JP. The ozone generators were fed with pure oxygen and the operating temperature was 25ºC. 0.00 81.10 5. Table 1 Characterisation of biologically treated wastewater from a textile plant pH Conductivity.3 200–400 treated textile wastewater. indicating its main elements. 0.55 8.45 51. Redoxpotential was measured to control the oxidation reactions.18 43.30 76.70 28.A.94 9. the plant was equipped with a monochromatic lamp (254 nm) IS-2700.75 3.29 80.30 40.8–8.00 47. L/h RSALT.40 45.20 18. It can be observed that conductivity and COD are still too high to reuse the water. Photograph of the laboratory oxidation plant.56 86. Fig. The per-meate fluxes JP (L/m2h) and salt retentions RSALT (%) were determined. at the end of each experiment.53 47.36 63. / Desalination 157 (2003) 81–86 For each membrane. The series of nanofiltration experiments was carried out using an experimental design obtained from Statgraphics Plus 4.92 81. Furthermore. Results and discussion 4. 2.40 82. bar Feed flow rate. 4.82 5.8–3.00 27. mg/L 7. The cross flow velocities related to these flow rates are 1. In addition.38 8.50 19.20 30. COD was analysed.66 and 2. Bes-Piá et al. 83 Contact reactor Redox potential measurement Ozone generators UV lamp Fig.10. % JP. 1.0. L/m2h 10 10 10 15 15 15 20 20 20 200 300 400 200 300 400 200 300 400 70.11.2 2.50 2. L/m2h RSALT.22 m/s respectively.20 MPa). The duration of each experiment was long enough to reach the steady state conditions (approximately 8 h).62 57. Nanofiltraton experiments Table 1 shows the variation ranges of the measured parameters values of the biologically In Table 2 salt rejections (RSALT) and permeate fluxes (JP) at the steady state conditions for the Table 2 Salt rejections and permeate fluxes at the steady state conditions in the different experiments Operating conditions NF-90 DK-5 Feed pressure.91 56.2.

3 and 4 show the standardized Pareto charts for permeate flux of the membranes tested. the measured values were lower than 50 mg/L in all experiments for both membranes. 4. 5 illustrates the obtained results with the membranes tested. Fig. since only this variable was significant according to the Pareto charts. . AB 4. Figs. the results of the chemical oxidation with A:P AB BB B:Q AA 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 Standardized effect Fig. In both cases salts retentions did no depend on the feed flow rate.A. The graphs only show the 60 NF-90 50 JP (L/m 2h) 84 DK-5 40 30 20 10 0 5 10 15 20 25 P (bar) Fig. In Fig.5 h and it was decided to work with two ozone generators (maximum ozone production of 8 g/h) due to the estimated O3/COD ratio necessary for the oxidation. No influence of feed flow rate (in the studied range) on permeate flux was found. reaching higher values with NF-90 (approximately 15% higher than with DK-5). 6 and 7 show the standardized Pareto charts for retention salts of the membranes tested. Standardized Pareto chart for permeate flux of NF-90. These Pareto charts display a frequency histogram where the length of each bar is proportional to the estimated effect and interactions of the feed flow rate (B) and feed pressure (A) on permeate flux. Influence of feed pressure on permeate flux in NF-90 and DK-5. It can be observed that DK-5 yielded permeate flux rates substantially higher than NF-90. At 20 bar. the operating time was fixed at 3. / Desalination 157 (2003) 81–86 tested membranes can be observed. The cross line indicates the significance of each parameter. it can be seen that only feed pressure influenced significantly on permeate flux. Related to permeate COD. the obtained salt rejection values have been studied using the same types of graphs. it is shown that for both membranes the variation of salt retentions with the feed pressure was very similar. Bes-Piá et al. A:P AA 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 Standardized effect Fig. Figs. In Table 3. The permeate flux values correspond with the average values calculated for the tested feed flow rates. 3. Similarly. 5. Oxidation experiments BB After previous experiments with ozone. Standardized Pareto chart for permeate flux of DK-5. For NF-90 and DK-5. 8. the average permeate flux was 44 L/(m2h). B:Q evolution of permeate flux with feed pressure P.2.

Fig. However. In addition. In fact. the management of the reject stream of the membrane process must be studied. Table 4 compares the final effluent quality of the two treatments applied. mV COD. the COD was 286 mg/L after the same time. mg/L Redox potential. / Desalination 157 (2003) 81–86 A:P A:P AB AB BB B:Q B:Q BB AA AA 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 0 2 Standardized effect NF-90 DK-5 RSALT (%) 80 60 40 20 0 5 10 15 4 6 8 Standardized effect Fig. Standardized Pareto chart for salts retention of NF-90. only with ozone. It can be seen the significant influence of the UV irradiation on the COD elimination. which indicate the evolution of the oxidation reactions. ozone and ozone/UV are shown. after 30 min the COD was already lower than 50 mg/L. Table 3 Experiments results in the chemical oxidation of the biologically treated textile wastewater Time. It can be observed that better results were achieved with nanofiltration. mV 326 286 276 184 63 84 98 70 209 244 264 266 276 302 307 319 — <50 — <50 <50 <50 <50 <50 — 209 — 225 239 297 320 325 . 100 85 20 25 P (bar) Fig. However. Influence of feed pressure on salts retention in NF-90 and DK-5. mg/L Redox potential. In this experiment it was observed that COD decreased substantially after 90 min. Standardized Pareto chart for salts retention of DK-5. min 15 30 45 60 90 120 150 210 Experiment with O3 Experiment with O3/UV COD. the table shows the measured redox potential values. 6. 7. 8. It can be observed that final measured value was very similar in the two experiments (≅320 mV).A. Bes-Piá et al.

Oppermann. Thus.A. • The combination of UV irradiation with ozone led to a significant reduction in the operating time to reach the same COD removal efficiency. Wat.L. D. G. Acknowledgment We thank Colortex 1967 S. The advantage of this technique in comparison with nanofiltration is that there is no reject stream generation. Russo. Kos and S. [5] J. Eng. for its support in the investigation project. mg/L Conductivity. Ozone treatment of textile wastewaters for reuse. Matteucci. Perkowski. S. / Desalination 157 (2003) 81–86 Table 4 Comparison between the treated effluents with nanofiltration and oxidation Process COD.I.. Reuse of wastewater of the textile industry after its treatment with a combination of physico-chemical treatment and membrane technologies. Bes-Piá et al. A. Anaerobic and aerobic treatment of a simulated textile effluent. Baig and P. the oxidation does not reduce the water conductivity. [7] G. References [1] C. Sci. Hawkes. Tech. NF-90 permeates could be reused as rinse water in the textile plant (COD <100 mg/L and conductivity <1.I.. L. Chem. Ciardelli. F. Bottino. [6] F. Ranieri and M. the reuse of the treated water is not possible. Technol.86 A. A high COD removal was achieved with chemical oxidation with ozone and with ozone/ UV. Ozonation — an important technique to comply with new German laws for textile wastewater treatment.J.A. Ozone: Sci. However. [4] S. Tech. A. Gahr. Sci. Wat. . Ciardelli. Capannelli and A. G. Desalination.0 mS/cm). [3] M. F. J. M. Salt rejections and permeate flux rates were dependent basically on feed pressure. for the studied feed flow rate range. Mendoza-Roca. Marcucci. no influence was found on the studied variables. Q = 200–400 L/h <50 0. Bes-Piá. Application of ozone in textile wastewater treatment.39–0. Desalination. Sci. 74 (1999) 993–999.. AlcainaMiranda. L. 44(5) (2001) 61–67. Iborra-Clar and M. 149 (2002) 137–143. 43(2) (2001) 197–204. Nevertheless. Hermanutz and W. J. Conclusions • • • • It can be concluded that: Nanofiltration of the biologically treated wastewater of a printing. Though the permeate flux rates of NF90 were lower than for the other. mS/cm Nanofiltration (NF-90) P = 20 bar. Esteves. Wat. Tech. 149 (2002) 169–174. [2] A. Wilcox. this was the selected membrane since the salt rejections were substantially higher than for the other membrane.. Salt rejection was higher for NF-90 than for DK-5. Ozone treatment for biorefractory COD removal.04 5. Ledakowicz. Iborra-Clar. Hawkes and S. 18(1) (1996) 73–85. Experimental campaigns on textile wastewater for reuse by means of different membrane processes.51 Ozone + UV after 30 min <50 3. dyeing and finishing textile plant produced permeates with very low COD (<50 mg/L).. Liechti. 30(3) (1994) 255–263. Biotechnol. O’Neill.