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topic 10751

Removal of Boron in wastewater from 12 mg/l to 1.0 mg/l


I am interested in the technology, capital cost as well as average annual cost for reducing Boron in an industrial wastewater from 12 mg/l to a level below 1.0 mg/l and a flow rate of 100,000 gallons per day.

Any information would be appreciated.

Thank You,

William M., PE [last name deleted for privacy by Editor]

- Rancho Santa Margarita, California


You can achieve this removal by some specialty ion exchange resins with the N-methylglucamine functional group. Capacity will vary according to background salts, and is most dependent on flow rate. Resins can be regenerated by sulfuric acid. Hope this helps.

Juzer Jangbarwala
wastewater treatment systems - Santa Fe Springs, California


Ion exchange will work, using the selective resins mentioned in a previous response, but the capacity is very low: approximately 2 ounces of boron per cubic foot of resin at exhaustion. It may be your best method, but it is a rather expensive resin, and you would exhaust 80-120 cubic feet of resin per day.

One of the problems will be what to do with the large waste volume that this would generate. There are a couple of references that suggest that the sulfuric acid can be reused several times and saturated with crystallization of the boric acid, but the last time I tried to find anyone doing this, I was unsuccessful.

If this is wastewater, another possibility is to recycle this water, by Ion exchange if the Total Dissolved Solids concentration is low, or by HERO reverse osmosis if the TDS concentration is high. Conventional RO systems will not have good boron rejection, but at a high operating pH, the rejection is > 90%. You would still have a boron containing waste, but in a much more concentrated and lower volume.

Lyle Kirman
consultant - Cleveland, Ohio


I am a student on attachment with a company which specializes in manufacturing and which has its own waste water treatment facility. We aim at reducing boron to less than 5 ppm. we plan to use chemical methods to treat the same. Currently we are using Aluminum Sulfate, Polymer and Lime and though the results are good,high boron water greater than 15 ppm cannot be treated on its own. Thus we plan to use a new procedure which uses hydrogen peroxide and an 'Accelerator'.

What is an accelerator? could anyone please help me? also any other chemical solutions for a 90% reduction in boron by methods other than RO or any physical processes.

Avinash Chandramouli
student - Singapore

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