Tannin-based Coagulants from Laboratory to Pilot Plant Scales for Coloured Wastewater Treatment

Kinga Grenda, Julien Arnold, David Hunkeler, José António Ferreira Gamelas, Maria Graça Rasteiro


Bark tannin extract from Acacia mearnsii (Mimosa ME) was modified at laboratory and pilot plant scales via the Mannich condensation reaction using formaldehyde and dimethylamine hydrochloride. Several conditions were varied during the modification procedure (heating rate, formaldehyde dosage, and Mannich solution activation time) to evaluate their influence on the shear viscosity and shelf life of the resulting products. It was possible to tune these properties with the reaction conditions. Modified condensed tannins with five distinct shear viscosities (30 cP to 430 cP) were selected to test the colour removal of anionic (Duasyn Direct Red and Acid Black 2) and cationic (Methylene Blue and Crystal Violet) dyes. The performance was monitored by ultraviolet spectroscopy. Colour removal was studied over different pH levels (1 to 14). Good decolouration results (85% to 96% reduction) were obtained with the simultaneous introduction of other additives to the process, which were bentonite and a cationic or anionic polyacrylamide, with minimal dosages of the latter additives. An improvement to decolouration performance with an increase in the biocoagulant viscosity was typically observed. However, for practical applications, modified condensed tannins with a lower viscosity may be preferred because they exhibited a longer shelf life and presented reasonable removal efficiencies.


Biocoagulant; Coagulation/flocculation; Decolouration; Tannin; Scale-up

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