Recent Published Articles

Understanding the initial use stage of cement mortar lining in drinking water distribution systems: Silicon and aluminum as stability indicators

Baoyou Shi , Qiaozhi Liu , Yuan Zhuang , Guiwei Li , Yao Zhang , Marc A. Edwards


Received December 04, 2022,Revised , Accepted January 29, 2023, Available online February 06, 2023

Volume 36,2024,Pages 495-505

The cement mortar lining (CML) of commonly used ductile iron pipes can severely deteriorate the drinking water quality at the initial stage of use, but the behavioral characteristics of different elements release from the CML in this stage is still unclear. In this study, dynamic immersion experiments with new cement mortar lined ductile iron pipe reactors were conducted under different feed water hardness and alkalinity conditions. The results showed that the release of alkaline substances from the CML at the initial stage of use could strongly influence the pH of water, which consequently greatly impacted the release/precipitation behaviors of calcium, aluminum and silicon. The pH and aluminum concentration of the effluent water could reach 11.5 and 700 µg/L within 24 hr of hydraulic retention time, respectively, under conditions of relatively lower hardness and alkalinity. Due to the pH elevation, calcium carbonate precipitation could occur even at much lower feed water alkalinity. Whereas the aluminum and silicon could keep release from the CML in soluble form at different hardness and alkalinity levels, and their release rate depended on the amount of calcium carbonate precipitation. Thus, aluminum and silicon were more suitable as indicators of the corrosion intensity at the initial stage of CML use rather than the traditional calcium carbonate precipitation potential. Appropriate feed water hardness and alkalinity levels for mitigating the initial intense corrosion of CML were proposed: hardness > 40 mg/L (CaCO3), alkalinity > 100 mg/L (CaCO3).

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