Journal of Hazardous Materials ( IF 9.038 ) Pub Date : 2020-10-16 , DOI: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2020.124295 Kai-Feng Yu; Peng Li; Han Li; Bo Zhang; Jun Yang; Fu-Yi Huang; Rui Li; Yiliang He
Coagulation has been accepted as a cost-effective and environmental-friendly method to remove pollutants. In our recent work, two coagulants of polyaluminum chloride (PAC) and polyaluminum ferric chloride (PAFC) with dosage gradients, and one coagulant aid of anionic polyacrylamide (PAM) were used to investigate their potential to remove particle-associated (PA) and free-living (FL) ARGs and MGEs detected by high throughput qPCR (HT-qPCR) method. The results indicated that the maximum removal efficiencies of PA- and FL-ARGs (4.67- and 3.18-logs) were obtained at the PAFC dosage of 50.0 mg/L. Excessive PAFC dosage can hamper the removal of size-fractionated ARGs. As PAC aid, anionic PAM (1.0 mg/L) had limited effects to promote the removal of PA-ARG, while FL-ARG removal was enhanced by 0.34 log at the PAC dosage of 50.0 mg/L. The fitted curves suggested that the optimal chemical dosages of PAC, PAFC and PAC coupled with PAM in the removal of total ARGs and MGEs were 40.5, 64.7 and 50.0 mg/L, respectively. In addition, we found that much more coagulants were needed to remove FL-ARGs compared to that of PA-ARGs. The removal efficiencies of size-fractionated ARGs by flocculation can be affected by coagulant type, dosage, coagulant aid, Zeta potential and microorganism lifestyle (PA or FL).