University of Oulu

Leiviskä, T., & Santos, S. C. R. (2023). Purifying water with plant-based sustainable solutions: Tannin coagulants and sorbents. Groundwater for Sustainable Development, 23, 101004.

Purifying water with plant-based sustainable solutions : tannin coagulants and sorbents

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Author: Leiviskä, Tiina1; Santos, Sílvia C. R.2,3
Organizations: 1Chemical Process Engineering, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 4300, 90014, Oulu, Finland
2LSRE-LCM - Laboratory of Separation and Reaction Engineering – Laboratory of Catalysis and Materials, Faculty of Engineering, University of Porto, Rua Dr. Roberto Frias, 4200-465, Porto, Portugal
3ALiCE - Associate Laboratory in Chemical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Porto, Rua Dr. Roberto Frias, 4200-465, Porto, Portugal
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 2.5 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Elsevier, 2023
Publish Date: 2023-08-28


More and more efforts are being made to find efficient bio-based water and wastewater treatment products. Especially the use of tannin-based materials has become more prevalent in recent years due to the wide availability of sustainable tannin sources. This article provides an updated literature review on the potential for tannin use for coagulants and adsorbent synthesis and practical applicability in water purification. Tannin coagulants work well in many applications, especially in color, turbidity, and COD removal from industrial waters, and are often even better than conventional ones (e.g., metal salts). One of the most significant benefits of tannin coagulants is their small effect on the pH of the treated water. Also, tannin coagulants can work at a wide pH range, and sludge volume is typically smaller than with metal salts. However, it is worth noting that the performance varies widely among tannin coagulants. Tannin-derived resins and composites have been synthesized and evaluated as adsorbents for water purification. In general, tannin-derived adsorbents present good adsorption capacities for metals, antimony, cationic dyes, and uranium ions, owing to their chelating ability and negative surface charge in the pH conditions of interest and reducing power in the case of chromium(VI). With simple chemical modifications, tannin can be converted into effective sorbents for more challenging pollutants. More research is needed to test tannin materials on a larger scale and evaluate their overall benefits and cost-effectiveness.

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Series: Groundwater for sustainable development
ISSN: 2352-801X
ISSN-E: 2352-801X
ISSN-L: 2352-801X
Volume: 23
Article number: 101004
DOI: 10.1016/j.gsd.2023.101004
Type of Publication: A2 Review article in a scientific journal
Field of Science: 218 Environmental engineering
116 Chemical sciences
Funding: The work was conducted as part of the Supporting Environmental, Economic and Social Impacts of Mining Activity (KO1030 SEESIMA) research project and received financial support from the Kolarctic CBC (Cross-Border Collaboration), the European Union, Russia, Norway, Finland, and Sweden. Its contents are the sole responsibility of the authors at the University of Oulu, and do not necessarily reflect the views of the European Union or the participating countries. This work was financially supported by LA/P/0045/2020 (ALiCE), UIDB/50020/2020 and UIDP/50020/2020 (LSRE-LCM), funded by national funds through FCT/MCTES (PIDDAC). S. Santos acknowledges postdoctoral scholarship (SFRH/BPD/117387/2016) awarded by FCT.
Copyright information: © 2023 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (