Disinfection of bacteria in water systems by using electrolytically generated copper:Silver and reduced levels of free chlorine

M. T. Yahya, L. K. Landeen, M. C. Messina, S. M. Kutz, R. Schulze, C. P. Gerba

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

41 Scopus citations

Abstract

As an alternative disinfectant to chlorination, electrolytically generated copper:silver (400 and 40 μg/L copper and silver, respectively) with and without free chlorine (0.3 mg/L) was evaluated over a period of 4 weeks in indoor and outdoor water systems (100 L tap water with natural body flora and urine). Numbers of total coliform, pseudomonas, and staphylococci were all less than drinking water standards in systems treated with copper:silver and free chlorine and systems treated with free chlorine alone (1.0 mg/L). No significant differences (p ≤ 0.05) in bacterial numbers were observed between systems with copper:silver and free chlorine and those with free chlorine alone. Overall, free-chlorine treatments (0.3 or 1.0 mg/L) showed significantly lower heterotrophic plate numbers than those without free chlorine. When challenged with a natural Staphylococcus sp. isolate, water with copper:silver and free chlorine had a 2.4 log10 reduction in bacterial numbers within 2 min, while free chlorine alone or copper:silver alone showed 1.5 and 0.03 log10 reductions, respectively. Addition of copper:silver to water systems may allow the concentration of free chlorine to be reduced while still providing comparable sanitary quality of the water.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)109-116
Number of pages8
JournalCanadian Journal of Microbiology
Volume36
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1990

Keywords

  • Chlorine
  • Copper
  • Disinfection
  • Silver
  • Water

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics

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