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UV For Developing Countries. A new tool for the disinfection toolbox?. UV Disinfection. Prof. Bill Larsen’s system. First UC Berkeley UV Tube. Next Model. Sri Lankan Neighborhood Scale Installation. B9 Plastics Better Water Maker. Ultra-Violet Light. UVA (315 – 400 nm): sun tans

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UV For Developing Countries

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Uv for developing countries

UV For Developing Countries

A new tool for the disinfection toolbox

A new tool for the disinfection toolbox?

UV Disinfection

Prof bill larsen s system

Prof. Bill Larsen’s system

Uv for developing countries

First UC Berkeley UV Tube

Next model

Next Model

Sri lankan neighborhood scale installation

Sri Lankan Neighborhood Scale Installation

B9 plastics better water maker

B9 Plastics Better Water Maker

Uv for developing countries

Ultra-Violet Light

UVA (315 – 400 nm): sun tans

UVB (280 – 315 nm): sun burns

UVC* (200 – 280 nm): disinfection

(*Nearly 100% filtered by the atmosphere.)

Interferes with DNA



Uv for developing countries

History of UV Drinking Water Disinfection

  • 1910 Marseilles, France:UV is first used to treat drinking water. Abandoned for free chlorine (by-product of soda production)

  • 1970’s:Disinfection by-products discovered. UV disinfection of drinking water common in Europe.

  • 1990’s:Outbreaks in the US lead to concern that chlorine is not effective against some organisms.

  • March 1993: a cryptosporidium outbreak in Milwaukee leads to 400,000 illnesses and 100+ deaths.

Uv for developing countries

Poly-alum added


Lake Ontario

Gravel, sand, and GAC filters

Chlorine residual added



History of UV Water Disinfection

  • 1999: Town of Ontario, NY becomes the first community in North America to disinfect surface source drinking water with UV light.

  • Currently: there are over 1500 wastewater treatment plants using UV in the US.

Uv system components

UV System Components

  • UV Bulbs and Ballast (AC or DC)

    • Mercury-argon lamps (an electrical arc ignites the mercury vapor which emits UV light)

    • Hopefor LEDs in the future…

  • Chamber

  • Quartz Sleeve

    • passes UV

    • maintains bulb temperatures

  • Sensor

    • to monitor bulb output

  • Cleaning Mechanism

Mercury vapor bulbs

Mercury Vapor Bulbs

  • Like florescent bulbs except:

    • Quartz not glass

    • No phosphor coating

  • 88% of the output at 253.7 nm

  • Lamp is susceptible to cooling by the effluent

  • Limited Lamp Life—1 year continuous operation

Uv for developing countries

Determining Dose (Fluence)

Dose (Fluence) = Intensity * Exposure Time

(J/m2) (W/m2) (s)

Function of bulb and water characteristics

Function of hydrodynamics


Geometry of reactor

Uv for developing countries

Simple Microbial Response

0% inactivated

90% inactivated, 10% surviving

99% inactivated, 1% surviving

99.9% inactivated, 0.1% surviving

99.99% inactivated, 0.01% surviving

99.999% inactivated, 0.001% surviving

Uv for developing countries


and imbedded bacteria

A More Complicated Response

  • Explanation of Shoulder

  • Threshold of DNA “hits” to inactivate?

  • Reactivation?

  • Explanation of Tailing

  • “Shielding” depends on particle absorbance

  • Imbedded bacteria

  • UV resistant bacteria

Water composition

Water Composition


  • Can lead to scattering, reflection, blocking of microorganisms by particles

  • Considered negligible up to 5 NTU

  • Theoretically, overall intensity is not reduced, but, energy is lost through interactions with particulates

  • Embedded microorganisms present the real limitation

  • Precede by filtration or flocculation/sedimentation

    Absorption Coefficient

  • Certain particles absorb at germicidal wavelengths

  • Fe, sulfites, aromatic organics, humic acid, dechlorination with Sodium Thiosulfate

  • Presence can greatly increase attenuation

Uv regulatory standards

UV Regulatory Standards


  • 1966: Dept. Health, Education & Welfare – 160 J/m2

  • 1999: NY State still required 160 J/m2 when I started working with UV

  • ~2000: WHO Recommends 380 J/m2

  • 2002: ANSI/NSF Standard 55 set at 400 J/m2

Estimation of dose fluence

Bulb Holders

UV Bulb

Aluminum Plate

Collimating Box

Concentric Apertures

Quasi Collimated UV rays

Manual UV Shutter

Petri Dish with sample and stir bar

Magnetic Stir Plate

Estimation of Dose (Fluence)

  • Biological Assays with Virus

    • Develop dose (fluence) inactivation relationship with Quasi Collimated Beam Apparatus

    • Measure Log inactivation in UV device

Ms2 colifage response to uv

MS2 Colifage response to UV

Estimation of dose

Estimation of Dose

  • Chemical Actinometry

    • Photochemical reaction rate

      • Molecules react with UV photos

      • Products of the reaction used to determine quantity of photons absorbed (dose)

Dose estimation point source summation

















































σw= abs of water



Dose Estimation: Point Source Summation


  • Bulb is considered a line of point sources distributing light equally in all directions

  • Intensity at each point is calculated as the sum of all point sources

Benefits of uv

Benefits of UV

  • No known byproducts

  • Short contact time (sec, instead of min)

  • No danger of overdosing

  • Ability to inactivate cyst forming organisms (e.g. Giardia, Cryptosporidium) at doses used for water treatment

  • No transportation of hazardous chemicals



Add chlorine residual

  • No residual disinfectant

  • Photoreactivation and dark repair possible

  • Bulb fouling

    • Organic constituents, hardness, algae and biofilm on quartz sleeve

  • Requires electricity

  • Shield from visible light for 1-2 hrs

     Overdose

  • Clean sleeve

  • Suspend bulb

Design ss pvc

Side View


65 cm

water outlet

G-8 germicidal UV bulb

water level

Design: ss-PVC

Ferro cement uv tube

Figure 1: Cross Section and Side View of the Ferro Cement UV-Tube



Ferro cement cover

Nut and Bolt

Metal Cover


Ferro cement trough




Ferro Cement UV-Tube

Laboratory testing

Constant Head Tank



Mixing Tank with Pump

Laboratory Testing

All UV-Tube Designs

  • Microbial Testing

  • Hydrodynamic Tracer Tests

  • Materials Degradation Testing

    Bulb Studies

  • Cycling

  • Warm-Up Time

Ms2 challenge test

MS2 Challenge Test

Ms2 microbial testing

MS2 Microbial Testing

MS2 Fluence Response Curve

Avg: 4.38

95% CI: 2.98 – 5.77




Rhodamine tracer testing

Rhodamine Tracer Testing

  • Pulse input with syringe

  • Samples every 3 seconds

  • Measure on spectrophotometer 555 nm

Materials degradation

Materials Degradation

Interactions of UV-Tube Materials with UV in the presence of water…

  • Flow through, minimal flow.

  • Overnight test, 16 hours.

  • Vacation test, 8 days.

  • Total Evaporation, 35 days.

    Test for volatile organic compounds and metals.

Materials degradation results

Materials Degradation Results

  • PVC alone  carcinogenic volatile organics

  • ABS alone  Benzene!

  • Galvanized steel  High zinc levels (taste)

  • Lined PVC  low levels of vocs, acceptable

  • Stainless with PVC endcaps  low levels, acceptable

  • Copper and aluminum have not been tested.

Bulb studies

Bulb Covers

Cycling Timers

Bulb Studies

Cycling Study

  • One cycle daily: 12 hours on, 12 hours off

  • Four cycles daily: 3 hours on, 3 hours off

  • Twelve cycles daily: 1 hour on, 1 hour off

    Warm up Study

Uv issues challenges

UV Issues/Challenges

  • Electricity requirements

  • Safety: UV exposure and electric shock

  • Material interactions with UV

  • Water depth and hydraulics (UV dose)

  • Water Characteristics

    • Embedded Bacteria

    • Fe, sulfites, aromatic organics, humic acid, & dechlorination with sodium thiosulfate absorb UV

  • Safe storage (no residual disinfectant)

  • Bulb life

  • *****Dissemination *****

Important facts

Important Facts:

  • UV is bad for your eyes, skin

  • Turbidity, chemicals affect UV transmittance

  • Bulb life is limited

  • Water depth and hydraulics are important

  • No residual disinfectant

Materials and uv c

Materials and UV-C

  • Reflects UV:

    • Aluminum

  • Reacts with UV:

    • PVC

    • ABS

    • Other plastics?

  • Blocks UV:

    • Glass

    • Plexiglass

  • Transmits UV:

    • Quartz

    • Teflon

Design features

Design Features:

  • Effective

    • Eliminate microorganisms

  • Portable or built in place

    • Size, weight

    • Construction

  • Simple

    • Local materials

    • Simple tools

Design features1

Design Features:

  • Reliable

    • Easy operation

    • Little maintenance required

    • Long term use

  • Cheap!

  • Fast (2 lpm or more)

  • Safe

    • NO UV Exposure

    • Visual cue telling if light is on or not



  • Compatible with 15 W (G15T8) or 30 W (G30T8) UV bulb

  • 12 V DC or 110 V AC ballast

  • Flow regulation

  • Filtration

  • Uniform and optimal UV exposure

The biggest challenge

The Biggest Challenge:

Final production price:

< $100 US

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