Ultraviolet Radiation for Microorganism Inactivation in Wastewater


The purpose of this research stream is to evaluate the kinetics of bacterial strains of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, to establish the influence of UV doses on the kinetics of disinfection, to study UV-resistant strains of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and to underline the influence of suspended solids on the inactivation kinetics of these strains. Furthermore, and due to the lack of readily available information about the influence of temperature on microorganism inactivation processes subsequent to inactivation with UV radiation, a series of batch studies were performed at 5℃, 25?C, 37.5℃ and 50℃. This paper investigates the impact of UV irradiation on bacterial strains of P. aeruginosa inactivation in both primary and secondary wastewater effluents and to show the influence of filtration in the process of disinfection of water by UV irradiaton. Our results indicate that the effect of temperature within the normal operating range of most treatment plants, i.e., 25℃ to 37.5℃, was found to be not statistically significant on the kinetics of the UV disinfection process. However, the kinetics of the UV disinfection process was highly affected by system operating at extreme temperatures, i.e., at 10 and 50℃. In a temperature range of 25℃ to 37.5℃, the inactivation of P. aeruginosa strains varied according to the incubation time and did not exceed 4 U-Log. Consequently, having more than 102 organisms/100ml of P. aeruginosa in treated wastewater would cause serious health and environmental problems. Low inactivation was observed when the operating temperature was reduced to 10℃ regardless of the incubation time tested. In contrast, a considerable increase in the inactivation rate was noted when the temperature of the disinfected wastewater was increased to 50℃. Hence, as 5℃ and 50℃ are outside the operating range of most treatment plants, as in our country, Tunisia, it is reasonable to assume that the effect of temperature change on the kinetics of UV disinfection process is negligible.

Share and Cite:

Mounaouer, B. and Abdennaceur, H. (2012) Ultraviolet Radiation for Microorganism Inactivation in Wastewater. Journal of Environmental Protection, 3, 194-202. doi: 10.4236/jep.2012.32024.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


[1] A. Mc Donald and D. Kay, “Water Resources and Strategies,” Longman Scientific and Technical Press, New York, 1988.
[2] Tofant,A ., Brizic, L. J. Perkovic, Z, ., Venglovsky, J. 2008,” Disinfection by product formation according to type of disinfectant used”. Folia Vetrterinaria, 52: Pages 93-94.
[3] Meiting G. U. O., Hongying, H. U., Wenjun, L. I. U., 2009, ”Preliminary investigation on safety of post-UV disinfection of wastewater: bio-stability in laboratory-scale simulated reuse water pipelines”. International Journal on the Science and Technology of Desalting and Water Purification, 239: Pages 22–28.
[4] USEPA, 2003a, “Ultraviolet Disinfection Guidance Manual. United States Environmental protection agency” EPA, No. 4601/ 815-D-03-007, June 2003, DRAFT, 478.
[5] USEPA, 2003b, “Voluntary National Guidelines for Management of Onsite and Clustered (Decentralized) Wastewater Treatment Systems”. EPA. 832-B-03-001.
[6] USEPA, “Ultraviolet Disinfection Technology Assessment,” EPA 832-R-92-004, PB92-222868, US Environmental Protection Agency, Washington DC, 1992.
[7] E. R. Blatchley, K. C. Bastian, R. K. Duggirala, J. E. Alleman, M. Moore and P. Schuerch, “Ultraviolet Irradia- tion and Chlorination/Dechlorination for Municipal Waste- water Disinfection,” Water Environment Research, Vol. 68, No. 2, 1996, pp. 194-204. doi:10.2175/106143096X127389
[8] J. L. Braunstein, F. J. Loge, G. Tchobanoglous and J. L. Darby, “Ultraviolet Disinfection of Filtrated Activated Sludge Effluent for Reuse Applications,” Water Environment Re- search, Vol. 68, No. 2, 1996, pp. 152-161. doi:10.2175/106143096X127334
[9] A. J. Oppenheimer, J. G. Jacangelo, J. M. Lane and J. E. Hoagland, “Testing the Equivalency of Ultraviolet Light and Chlorine for Disinfection of Wastewater to Reclamation Standards,” Water Environment Research, Vol. 69, No. 5, 1997, pp. 14-24. doi:10.2175/106143097X125137
[10] O. K. Scheible, M. C. Casey and A. Forndran, “Ultravio- let Disinfection of Wastewater from Secondary Effluent and Combined Sewer Overflows,” EPA/600/2-86/005, PB86-145182, US Environmental Protection Agency, Cincinnati, 1986.
[11] G. Zukovs, J. Kollar, H. D. Monteith, K. W. A. Ho and S. A. Ross, “Disinfection of Low Quality Wastewaters by Ultraviolet Light Irradiation,” Journal of the Water Pollu- tion Control Federation, Vol. 58, No. 3, 1986, pp. 199- 206.
[12] G. E. Whitby and G. Palmateer, “The Effect of UV Trans- mission, Suspended Solids and Photoreactivation on Microorganisms in Wastewater Treated with UV Light,” Water Science and Technology, Vol. 27, No. 3-4, 1993, pp. 379-386.
[13] G. Sakamoto, “Clean Water for the 21st Century, Doing More for Less, UV Disinfection For Wastewater Recla- mation,” Proceedings of the 1997 PNPCA Annual Conference, Seattle, October 1997.
[14] B. Ormeci and K. G. Linden, “Comparison of UV and Chlorine Inactivation of Particle and Non-Particle Asso- ciated Coliform,” Water Science and Technology: Water Supply, Vol. 2, No. 5-6, 2002, pp. 403-410.
[15] J. P. Dietrich, H. Basagaoglu, F. J. Loge and T. R. Ginn, “Preliminary Assessment of Transport Processes Influencing the Penetration of Chlorine into Wastewater Particles and the Subsequent Inactivation of Particle-Associ- ated Organisms,” Water Resources, Vol. 37, No. 1, 2003, pp. 139-149.
[16] R. G. Qualls, M. P. Flynn and J. D. Johnson, “The Role of Suspended Particles in Ultraviolet Disinfection,” Journal of the Water Pollution Control Federation, Vol. 55, No. 10, 1983, pp. 1280-1285.
[17] H. Liltved and S. J. Cripps, “Removal of particle-Associ- ated Bacteria by Prefiltration and Ultraviolet Irradiation,” Aquaculture Research, Vol. 30, No. 6, 1999, pp. 445-450. doi:10.1046/j.1365-2109.1999.00349.x
[18] F. J. Loge, R. W. Emerick, D. E. Thompson, D. C. Nel- son and J. L. Darby, “Factors Influencing Ultraviolet Dis- infection Performance, Part I: Light Penetration to Waste- water Particles,” Water Environment Research, Vol. 71, No. 3, 1999, pp. 377-381. doi:10.2175/106143097X122176
[19] F. J. Loge, R. W. Emerick, T. R. Ginn and J. L. Darby, “Association of Coliform Bacteria with Wastewater Particles: Impact of Operational Parameters of the Activated Sludge Process,” Water Resources, Vol. 36, No. 1, 2001, pp. 41-48.
[20] R. W. Emerick, F. J. Loge, T. R. Ginn and J. L. Darby, “Modeling the Inactivation of Particle Associated Coli- form Bacteria,” Water Environment Research, Vol. 72, No. 4, 2000, pp. 432-438. doi:10.2175/106143000X137969
[21] A. Hassen, M. Jemli, M. Nabli and A. Boudabous, “Dis- infection of Wastewater by Ultravioletradiation in a Large- scale Pilot Plant—Effect of Low Dose UV on Pseudomonas aeruginosa,” Vector Environment, Vol. 30, 1997, pp. 75-81. doi:10.1016/S0960-8524(99)00179-0
[22] L. S. Clesceri, A. E. Greenberg,and A. D. Eaton, (Eds.), “Standard Methods for the Examination of Water and Wastewater,” 20th Edition, American Public Health As- sociation, Washington DC, 1998.
[23] P. Savoeurn, “Contribution to the Study of Pseudomonas aeruginosa Waterborne. Extraction and Put into Evidence of the Toxicity of Pyocyanin,” Ph.D Thesis, University of Nancy I, Lorraine, 1983, p. 77.
[24] A. Hassen, M. Mahrouk, H. Ouazari, M. Cherif, A. Bou- dabous and J. J. Damelincourt, “UV Disinfection of Treated Waste Water in a Large-Scale Pilot Plant and In- activation of Selected Bacteria in a Laboratory UV De- vice,” Bioresource Technology, Vol. 74, No. 2, 2000, pp. 141-150.
[25] J. Lesavre and P. Magoarou, “Méthodes de Mesure de la dose UV en déSinfection des eaux réSiduaires,” Agence de l’Eau Seine-Normandie, Manterre, 2004.
[26] F. Taghipour, “Ultraviolet and Ionizing Radiation for Mi- croorganism Inactivation,” Water Research, Vol. 38, No. 14, 2004, pp. 3940-3948. doi:10.1016/j.watres.2004.06.016
[27] A. Elkarmi, K. Abu-Elteen and A. Al-Karmi, “Disinfect- ing Contaminated Water with Natural Solar Radiation Utilizing a Disinfection Solar Reactor in a Semi-Arid Region,” Jordan Journal of Biological Sciences, Vol. 1, No. 2, 2008, pp. 47-45.
[28] B. Mounaouer, H. B. Noureddine, H. Helmi,and H. Abdennaceur, “Modeling of Secondary Treated Wastewater Disinfection by UV Irradiation: Effects of Suspended Solids Content,” Journal of Environmental Science, Vol. 22, No. 8, 2010, pp. 1218-1224. doi:10.1016/S1001-0742(09)60241-2
[29] K. D. Mena and C. P Gerba, “Risk Assessment of Pseu- domonas aeruginosa in Water,” Reviews of Environmen- tal Contamination & Toxicology, Vol. 201, 2009, pp. 71- 115. doi:10.1007/978-1-4419-0032-6_3
[30] K. Kashimada, N. Kamiko, K. Yamamoto and S. Ohgaki, “Assessment of Photoreactivation Following Ultraviolet Light Disinfection,” Water Science and Technology, Vol. 33, 1996, pp. 261-269. doi:10.1016/0273-1223(96)00428-3

Copyright © 2024 by authors and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.

Creative Commons License

This work and the related PDF file are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.