Trends in treating industrial textile wastewater and other effluents using electrocoagulation

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Gafoor, A., Ali, N., Kumar, S., Begum, S., & Rahman, Z. (2020). Applicability and new trends of different electrode materials and its combinations in electro coagulation process: A brief review. Materials Today: Proceedings. Available online 7 June 2020.

The content of textile wastewater “broadly depends on the composition of scum in fibers and the chemicals used in various stages.” A large quantity of wastewater is generated during the dying of cloths in the different stages like bleaching, dyeing, printing, and finishing. The primary contaminants in textile effluent are the organic and inorganic chemicals. Dyeing substances are the main pollutant in textile wastewater and should be treated before releasing the wastewater into bodies of water. Untreated effluent produces an aesthetic issue, affects water transparency and damages aquatic life.

Different technologies such as physical, chemical, biological, advanced oxidations and electro-chemical methods are involved in the treatment of industrial effluent like textile wastewater. The widely followed biological treatment techniques require more time, wide operational space and are not effective for wastewater containing heavy metal and hazardous elements. The advanced oxidation process has a tremendous operational cost and usually requires highly immaculate water. The chemical coagulation process is time-consuming and brings about a huge volume of sludge.

In the electrostatic coagulation process, the electrode plates are dissolved in the wastewater by a direct current source of metal electrodes immersed in the effluent. Electrocoagulation (EC) has grown in popularity as an eco-friendly method for treating industrial effluent due to its adaptability and cost-effectiveness. EC has been used for treating a wide range of industrial effluent besides textile wastewater. Metal ions combine with hydroxide ions to form metal hydroxide which acts as the coagulant for the destabilization of suspended as well as dissolved pollutants in the industrial wastewater. This review paper looks at the effectiveness of EC for the treatment of industrial effluents as well as its energy consumption.

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