Colloid-facilitated metal transport in peat filters
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The effect of colloids on metal retention in peat columns was studied, with the focus on colloids from two sources - organic matter leached from peat, and introduced organic and hydrous ferric oxide (HFO) colloids. A significant fraction of metals was found to be associated with peat-produced organic colloids; however the concentrations of organic colloids leached are low (trace concentrations) and temporal and have a limited effect on the efficiency of peat filters. In contrast, the presence of organic and HFO colloids in the input water causes a significant decrease in the performance of peat filters. Organic colloids were identified as the main vector of cadmium, copper, nickel, and zinc, while lead is transported by both organic and HFO colloids. The colloidal distribution of metals obtained in this study has important implications for the mobility of trace metals in porous media. The occurrence of colloids in the input waters and their characteristics must be considered when designing water treatment facilities.
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