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Treatment of arsenic contaminated drinking water in Ghana
2004 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year))Student thesis
Abstract [en]

A study has been made to find and adapt a method for treating arsenic contaminated drinking water in the Ashanti region of Ghana. A screening to find arsenic affected communities was initially carried out near the town of Kumasi. Since appreciable levels were not found the screening was expanded to the mining district of Obuasi. The levels found were not as high as in other affected areas in the world, although higher than the guideline value of 10 ppb (mg/l) set by WHO. No levels higher than 45 ppb were found in boreholes during the screening and the highest level found in surface water was 93 ppb. It was found that photochemical oxidation did not lower the arsenic content enough for the water to be considered as fully potable. A filtration method using iron and sand as filter media, known as the “3-Kalshi” method, was found to provide a sufficient means of treating contaminated water under Ghanaian conditions. However, it was also discovered that the method is not suitable for treating turbid surface water, since the particles will clog the filter. The arsenic determinations were performed with a Digital Arsenator with a reported detection limit of 2 ppb. Tests revealed that the filter assembly was capable of reducing levels of As(tot) from about 100 ppb to below the WHO guideline value. With an improved flow rate of 6 l/h, the filter was capable of reducing the levels of As(tot) from about 45 ppb to below the guideline value. This was considered enough since this flow rate could provide the amount of water needed for one household during a day. Further studies are needed to determine whether the filter is capable of treating water with higher levels of arsenic with the increased flow rate. Basic water quality tests indicate that the filter is suitable for treating water contaminated by arsenic. The waste products impact on the environment is a matter that needs further studies, although the studies referred to in this report do not indicate that the waste products would be harmful. It was found that the sand in the villages contained arsenic and can therefore not be used as filter media. The affected villagers will have to get the sand from elsewhere. The villagers showed no symptoms of arsenic poisoning and the filter means extra work. These facts that makes it unlikely that they will use this method to treat drinking water.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2004. , 54 p.
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-54347Local ID: EMI-10OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-54347DiVA: diva2:1103062
Subject / course
Energy and Environmental Engineering, Bachelor of Science
Available from: 2017-05-30 Created: 2017-05-30

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
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  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
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More styles
Language
  • de-DE
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