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CM8001 UNIT 5: Water

Where does potable (fit for consumption) drinking water come from?

- Surface water: from lakes, rivers, reservoirs (0.014%)

- Ground water: mostly pumped from wells drilled into underwater aquifers (2.59%)

Average US consumption: 100 gallons a day. 75% down the drain.

Groundwater can be contaminated by (4):

- Abandoned mines

- Runoff from fertilised fields

- Poorly constructed landfills and septic systems

- Household chemicals poured down the drain

EN: a measure of an atoms attraction for the electrons it shares in a covalent bond. Assigned by
Linus Pauling, winner of 2 Nobel prizes

H-bonds are intermolecular bonds, and covalent bonds are intramolecular bonds.

Water expands when it forms ice because when hydrogen bonds are formed big holed are made in

Soap; from oils and fats treated with lye, minerals in water will react with it: insoluble

Detergents; synthetic from petroleum products. Toxic to wildlife.

Chemistry of laundry

- Surfactants reduce surface tension and help water penetrate fabric.

- Detergents are more tolerant of Ca2+ etc.

- Bleach reacts with dyes and change their photochromic properties

White fabrics turn yellow because they start to absorb blue.

Brighteners are fluorescent dyes that absorb UV and emit as blue.


- Sodium lauryl sulfate (~30% in shampoos)

Limited solubility in cold water

Large foam

- Sodium laureth Sulfate (have 2 ethers replacing 2 carbons in the chain)

Harsher than sodium lauryl sulfate

- Sodium Xylenesulfonate


Help emulsify

- Tetrasodium EDTA

Help sequester Ca2+ etc.

CM8001 UNIT 5: Water

Improve stability and appearance

Makes hard water soft

- Glycol distearate

Conditioning agent, impacting high luster pearl look. Also used in lipstick and conditioner

2-in-1 conditioner bound in polymer. Polymer dissolves upon rinse, releasing conditioner.

- Cell membranes are constructed mainly of surfactants

Water treatment (Call Sarah For Doctor)

1. Coagulation

- Aluminium sulfate and calcium hydroxide added.

- Aluminium hydroxide gel is formed and coagulates the suspended clay, dirt.

2. Sedimentation

- Suspended particles allowed to settle in tanks

3. Filtration

- Supernatant from sedimentation tank filtered through gravel and sand

4. Disinfection

- Usually by chlorination and fluoridation

Chlorination of water supply

- 3 methods:

1. Chlorine gas

2. Sodium hypochloride (NaOCl)

3. Calcium hypochloride (Ca(OCl)2)

- Low conc (0.075-0.600ppm) allowed to remain in solution

- By-products: trihalomethanes

Unpleasant odor and taste

Implicated to be carcinogenic

Bromine may replace chlorine

Alternatives to chlorination

- Ozone

(+) Strongest oxidant (taste & odor control)

(+) No trihalomethanes formed

CM8001 UNIT 5: Water

(+) no protective residues

(-) high cost

(-) difficult to control and monitor

- UV

(-) effective in killing almost all pathogens

(-) no chemicals

(-) no by-products

(-) no residual protection

(-) difficult to monitor efficacy

(-) no oxidative control of taste and odor

(-) mercury lamps may pose risk to water and environment.

Maximum Contaminant Level (MCL):

The highest level of a contaminant that is allowed in drinking water. (enforceable standards)

Maximum Contaminant Level Goal (MCLG):

Level of a contaminant in drinking water below which there is no known or expected risk to health. It is
a margin of safety, but non-enforceable. MCL can be higher than MCLG because of difficulty in
measuring small quantities of a contaminant, a lack of available treatment, too high costs, etc.

Examples of contaminants in water:

- Cadmium (Cd)

Found in industrial areas, mining areas, etc.

Respiratory tract, kidney, liver problems


Itai-itai disease (Cd contaminated rice)

- Lead (Pb)

Most common pollutant in drinking water

Usually from corrosion of lead pipes, water tanks, etc.

Vehicle exhaust

Affects the young most (remain in bloodstream longer because of less bone mass, and
delays physical and mental development)

High blood pressure

- Mercury (Hg)

Found in many rocks including coal

CM8001 UNIT 5: Water

Accumulate in fish, etc.

Making freshwater from saltwater

1. Desalinization (removing ions from saltwater)

- Requires large amounts of energy

- Chemical contaminants could be removed

- 3 methods for desalination:

Ion exchange


Reverse osmosis

- Only 1% of drinking water

2. Distillation

- Energy consuming, costly, only in energy rich countries

3. Reverse osmosis (Contaminated water is (pressured) to force the movement of water through
a semipermeable membrane from a solution that is more conc. To less conc.

- Results in NEWater.

Uses of NEWater:

- Direct non-potable use: air-con cooling, boiler feeds, etc.

- Indirect potable use: mixed with reservoir water