The Science of the total environment, 435-436:509-25, Elsevier B.V., 10, 2012. Paper Website abstract bibtex
This paper provides a review of recent scientific research on the removal by activated carbon (AC) in drinking water (DW) treatment of 1) two classes of currently unregulated trace level contaminants with potential chronic toxicity-pharmaceutically activate compounds (PhACs) and endocrine disrupting compounds (EDCs); 2) cyanobacterial toxins (CyBTs), which are a group of highly toxic and regulated compounds (as microcystin-LR); and 3) the above mentioned compounds by the hybrid system powdered AC/membrane filtration. The influence of solute and AC properties, as well as the competitive effect from background natural organic matter on the adsorption of such trace contaminants, are also considered. In addition, a number of adsorption isotherm parameters reported for PhACs, EDCs and CyBTs are presented herein. AC adsorption has proven to be an effective removal process for such trace contaminants without generating transformation products. This process appears to be a crucial step in order to minimize PhACs, EDCs and CyBTs in finished DW, hence calling for further studies on AC adsorption removal of these compounds. Finally, a priority chart of PhACs and EDCs warranting further study for the removal by AC adsorption is proposed based on the compounds' structural characteristics and their low removal by AC compared to the other compounds.