Effect of chlorine, biodegradable dissolved organic carbon and suspended bacteria on biofilm development in drinking water systems

Francesc Codony, Jordi Morato, Ferran Ribas, Jordi Mas

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20 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The influence of chlorine levels, the concentration of dissolved organic carbon and the abundance of bacteria in suspension, on the formation of biofilms on experimental glass surfaces were evaluated. Twelve reactors, packed with glass spheres, were continuously perfused with tap water. The properties of water were altered in different ways: chlorine was neutralized by the addition of thiosulfate, the levels of assimilable organic carbon were increased through the addition of acetate, and the bacterial load was modified by means of the continuous inoculation of a growing active culture of Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Continuous addition of bacteria to water containing 0.5 mg/l of free chlorine, did not result in the formation of detectable biofilms even after one month. When bacteria were added simultaneously with thiosulfate as a chlorine neutralizer, a community of attached bacteria appeared in less than 24 hours. Addition of acetate with the presence of 0.5 mg/l of chlorine did not stimulate the formation of biofilms. On the contrary, neutralization of chlorine with thiosulfate allowed the formation of biofilms with 106 cfu/cm2 in about two weeks.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)311-319
JournalJournal of Basic Microbiology
Volume42
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 6 Nov 2002

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