Efficacy of Natural Coagulants in Treating Sugar Industry Effluents

Document Type : Original Research Paper


Department of Environmental Science, Institute of Science, GITAM (Deemed to be) University, Visakhapatnam-530045, India.


Industrial sector is understood to be one of the major offenders in polluting environment particularly
water among others. Sugar industry is one among the agro-based industry releasing high organic
pollutants rich in BOD. Though conventional treatment methods have been employed in treating sugar
industry effluents at varied degrees, they come with their own setbacks. In this direction natural
coagulants are explored and evaluated for their potential and efficiency towards treating sugar industry
effluents. The process of coagulation and flocculation removes impurities precisely colloidal
impurities through the phenomenon of destabilization, bridging and sweep coagulation. In order to
have an effective treatment factors governing coagulation are to be optimized to determine the dose,
pH, mixing time etc. The prime objective of the present study is to characterize the sugar industry
effluents, test the efficiency of both chemical and natural coagulants to treat these effluents and bring
out a comparison and potential of natural coagulants with that of chemical coagulants. Jar test
apparatus was employed all coagulation studies and the results were promising with reduction in
parameters like colour (99.28%), electrical conductivity (60.39%), turbidity (97.67%), chloride
(69.23%) and total dissolved solids (60.42%) highest by ferric chloride followed by the natural
coagulants. The findings of the study suggest that the lowest dose of 0.25g/l was optimum to remove
the physico-chemical parameters both by chemical and natural coagulants and since natural coagulants
were equally competent with chemical coagulants these can be substituted towards achieving green
treatment options.


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