Fluoride in Drinking Water and Its Removal

Centre for Rural Development and Technology, Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, Hauz Khas, New Delhi, India.
Journal of Hazardous Materials (Impact Factor: 4.53). 10/2006; 137(1):456-63. DOI: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2006.02.024
Source: PubMed


Excessive fluoride concentrations have been reported in groundwaters of more than 20 developed and developing countries including India where 19 states are facing acute fluorosis problems. Various technologies are being used to remove fluoride from water but still the problem has not been rooted out. In this paper, a broad overview of the available technologies for fluoride removal and advantages and limitations of each one have been presented based on literature survey and the experiments conducted in the laboratory with several processes. It has been concluded that the selection of treatment process should be site specific as per local needs and prevailing conditions as each technology has some limitations and no one process can serve the purpose in diverse conditions.

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Available from: Meenakshi Arora, Jul 01, 2015
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    • "In the era of global development ground water being contaminated due to industrialization, urbanization and from various other sources. Although ground water contributes only 0.6% of total water resources on earth, from which 80% accounts rural domestic water needs and 50% contribute urban water needs in developing countries like India (Karthikeyan et al., 2010;Meenakshi & Maheswari, 2006). Ground water contamination by fluoride was emerging as one of the severe regional problem in India (Karthikeyan et al., 2010). "

    Preview · Article · Dec 2015 · Journal of Urban and Environmental Engineering
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    • "Groundwater quality has recently gained significant attention in rural water supply due to its reliability and dependable nature. Even though groundwater contributes only 0.6% of the total water resources world over (Meenakshi and Mehshwari, 2006), rural communities largely depend on it due to intermittent and inadequate piped water supply. Groundwater provides a relatively clean, reliable and cost effective resource (Bovolo et al., 2009) with good natural quality that is adequate enough for potable supplies while demanding minimal treatment attention (Yidana, 2010). "
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    ABSTRACT: The purpose of this research was to characterize the quality of groundwater for drinking and irrigation in Blantyre, Malawi as well as identify some geochemical processes governing mineralization of major and some minor elements. The aquifer studied is part of the extensive crystalline basement complex. The suitability and classification involved confirmatory analysis of the results with World Health Organization and Malawi Standards Board groundwater guideline values. The water samples were analyzed for major descriptors (pH, Temperature, turbidity, major ions, total dissolved solids and electrical conductivity (EC), using standard methods. Besides, arsenic, iron and fluoride were analyzed as well. Multivariate statistics (especially Hierarchical Cluster Analysis and Factor Analysis), hydrographical methods (i.e. Piper diagram) and geochemical modeling programs (AquaChem and PHREEQC) were used to characterize the quality and explain the sources and evolution of groundwater. Suitability of groundwater for irrigation was assessed using Wilcox method which identified BH01, BH16 and BH21 as high salinity areas. Incidentally, the three boreholes had relatively higher sulfate and nitrate concentrations than the rest. Nevertheless, the groundwater was found to be within acceptable limits for drinking quality except elevated concentrations of nitrate, fluoride and iron in some boreholes compared with WHO standards, despite meeting the national standards. Borehole BH01, BH02, BH07, BH13 and BH18 exhibited nitrate concentrations greater than national standards (45 mg/L) an indication of groundwater contamination. Furthermore, the groundwater is slightly acidic to slightly above neutral with total dissolved solids less than 500 mg/l. Generally, groundwater was undersaturated with respect to both calcite and dolomite while oversaturated with respect to halite, goethite and hematite. Silicate and carbonate weathering were identified as main mineral sources for major ions in groundwater. There is a dire need for more studies and monitoring of the groundwater in this area to safeguard the resource and human health.
    Full-text · Article · Dec 2015 · Journal of African Earth Sciences
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    • "Reverse osmosis (RO) can completely defluoridate water, but in practice, it depends on the level of pressure applied and membrane capacity [Meenakshi, Maheshwari 2006]. This process is energy intensive and it is not cost-effective. "
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    ABSTRACT: This study evaluates the feasibility of using tamarind (Tamarindus indica) seed powder for de-fluoridation of fluoride contaminated water. Batch study confirmed that tamarind seeds in dry powder form could remove 87% of fluoride from water. This bio-sorbent can be used effectively in areas where fluoride concentrations are above the permissible limits of 1.5 mg-l-1 as per WHO Standard, 1984. Tamarind seed powder was incorporated in a matrix of sodium alginate and made into gel-beads. The beads were tested for de-fluoridation efficiency by conducting column studies. The effect of various factors, such as flow rate, retention time, and the number of runs on the efficacy of fluoride removal was also studied. The results revealed that flow rate did not seem to have much effect on the percentage fluoride removal but the fluoride concentration decreased drastically upon greater retention time and multiple runs.
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Questions & Answers about this publication

  • Ljubomir Jacić added an answer in Toothpastes:
    Should we still accept flouride to be added to our toothpaste and to the water we drink in our homes?

    Fluoride toothpastes sold in the United States bear the following poison warning:

    “WARNING: Keep out of reach of children under 6 years of age. If you accidentally swallow more than used for brushing, seek professional help or contact a poison control center immediately.”

    Small doses (0.1 to 0.3mg,kg) of fluoride can induce symptoms of acute fluoride toxicity.  A child weighing 10 kilograms,  can suffer symptoms of acute toxicity by ingesting just 1 to 3 milligrams of fluoride in a single sitting.


    Ljubomir Jacić

    Dear @Vilemar, different oppinions among ordinary people and the experts! "...The daily supplementation with fluoride is undoubtedly an important preventing factor in protecting teeth from caries, and, as an important mitogenic stimulus for osteoblasts, it may enhance mineral deposition in bone, but on the other hand fluoride, above a threshold concentration, has been demonstrated to be toxic..." Here are some good research about!

    The attached paper on toothpastes on the Belgian Market brings very good methodology and analysis!

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