• Project No 1038
  • Project Name Nitrosamines, including N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA), and other nitrogenous disinfection by-products in Australian drinking waters
  • Lead Organisation Water Corporation
  • Research Lead Curtin University
  • Main Researcher Anna Heitz
  • Completion Year 2016

Project Description

Components of dissolved organic matter (DOM) and dissolved organic nitrogen (DON) in source waters can react with disinfecting chlorine or chloramine to form nitrogenous disinfection byproducts (n-DBPs) which might be toxic and hazardous to health. In this research, water samples were collected from nine water treatment plants and found to contain 28 n-DBPs. Total n-DBP formation, and particularly brominated n-DBP formation, was affected more by the levels of bromine in raw water than the different forms of nitrogen, and this led to the recommendation that it could be beneficial to monitor raw waters with high bromine concentrations. Although chloramination caused formation of more n-DBPs than chlorination, coagulation treatment decreased total DBP levels. Further research was recommended to characterise the toxicity of n-DBPs and to optimise the removal of DOM, DON and other n-DBP precursors by using GAC Acticarb in the treatment train.