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Coptrol specific use
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How to use Coptrol to Control Algae in
Effluent and Waste Water Treatment
Effluent Systems: 6 critical questions to answer
|cyanobacteria|should algae be treated|most effective method|
Because an effluent lagoon is a highly eutrophic environment, with large amounts of organic matter being regularly pumped into the lagoon there are
questions that should be answered before considering algal
Are the species of algae present likely to be cyanobacteria and if
so what is the likelihood of toxin contamination in the water
Should the algae be treated?
What is the most effective method of treating algae?
Do algal concentrations limit evaporation rates?
Does algae assist with the breakdown of biomass and organic
What is the likely environmental impact of killing the algae?
Do algal concentration limit evaporation rates?
| easy test|
There is some evidence in the literature confirming
algal concentrations do inhibit evaporation rates. It is dependent
on a number of variables that are often specific to the locality.
This problem can be relatively easily determined by conducting
a small scale experiment. RCI is able to suggest experimental
methods if required.
Do the algae assist with the breakdown of biomass and
| biomass|respiration ycle|
When considering the nature of the environment, concentration
of biomass involved
and the normal respiration cycle of an algal
that high levels of algae
assist in the
breakdown of organic biomass is
difficult to sustain.
There are times in a 24 hr cycle when algal populations are
depleting oxygen from the system. On balance the proposition
that algal populations will contribute to aerobic activity is highly
What is the likely environmental impact of killing the algae?
The consequence of killing such a large volume of algae needs
to be understood
before action is taken. The sudden death of
this number of algal cells is likely to
result in the following:
A release of all the toxins present in the algal cells at one time.
This of itself probably does not change the overall status of a system as it is already likely to be highly contaminated with toxin. Killing all the algae at one time will cause a spike in toxin level which will stimulate bacterial digestion of toxins already taking
Oxygen levels are likely to be relatively low in a system of this type; the death of large volumes of algae will cause these Oxygen levels to decrease.
This may result in the death of
There are various methods of treating algae to consider.
Some common options to are:
1. Use of Copper Sulphate
2. Use of Copper Sulphate and
3. Use of
Use of Copper sulphate in effluent systems.
bluestone| chemistry of Cu in effluent|
A review of the chemistry of this approach is outlined below:
Effluent water is usually highly mineralised. When copper
sulphate is added to
effluent water copper sulphate reacts
in the water. Initially copper is released
from the sulphate
bond creating Cu++, at the same time sulphate reacts with
water creating mild sulphuric acid.
It is the Cu++ that is toxic to algae; however, its persistence
in this form has a very limited duration. Cu++ reacts with
and hydroxides in solution to form insoluble copper
have no algal toxicity. In most cases only 5%
of the Copper ion from Copper Sulphate remains in
the Cu++ phase
for 60 minutes. Most is
lost as an insoluble
form in less than 60
minutes and never comes
in contact with
the target algae.
Try conducting a pilot test using copper sulphate and watch for a cloudy reaction, the reaction will be copper sulphate changing into an insoluble copper carbonate/hydroxide compound.
In Australia Copper Sulphate is no longer approved for use in effluent treatment systems.
Use of Copper sulphate and hypochlorite in effluent systems
Hypochlorite, does not work as an efficient algaecide in fresh
water. When used in an organic rich environment such as effluent it is
even less effective.
Mixing Copper Sulphate and hypochlorite together should be avoided. It will produce a highly noxious chlorine gas that could cause significant health problems to anyone exposed to it.
Use of Coptrol in effluent systems
|Coptrol in effluent|
has a number of major advantages.
is a liquid designed to remain stable in highly mineralised
aquatic environments without the risk of precipitation. It is ideally
suited for use in effluent pond systems as these are usually
environments high in carbonate and hydroxide anions. Application
rates will depend on the likely
concentration of algae. Once the
algal situation is brought under
rates of application
can be used to ensure ongoing
Applying product over a large surface area will require either a large
input of labour or aerial application. Dosing marginally effective
copper sulphate from a boat is a highly labour intensive operation
with the possibility of health problems for those exposed to the
lagoon for prolonged periods.
Application of Copper Sulphate by air also has serious issues.
Reacting copper crystals into slurry in an aircraft tank creates
real potential for corrosion in an aeroplane. There is also the
question of the even distribution of copper sulphate in such large
volumes over such large areas.
is a non corrosive liquid that can be readily
applied by air over large areas. For example Coptrol is routinely
aerially applied to rice production systems in Australia.
works by accumulation of copper in the algal cell. The
chelate acts as a nutrient source for algae. This ensures the algae
keeps accumulating copper until it becomes toxic to the algae.
The chelate protects the copper from precipitation.
approved for use in
potable water supplies in Australia.
is easier and cheaper to apply than the
has a proven record dealing with algal problems
in effluent systems.
If algae is a problem in effluent system follow this 5 step method to keep your waters clear and bright.
First identify the algae present. If you are not certain
. This site enables you to identify all the
algae in Australia.
Now calculate the volume of water to treat. Ignore depths below
metre. We have a page which explains the methods used to
determine the amount of water
treat. If you need assistance
calculate the volume of water to treat with Coptrol.
Next calculate the amount of
needed. An easy
to calculate is:
To control algae in effluent systems add Coptrol at the rate of 8-10 litres per megalitre of water.
Dilute the required amount of
using a 1:10 or even a 1:20
The best application method is by spraying. Apply on a sunlit
free day when algae first appear. If this is impractical look
If you still need help call RCI at no cost to you.
where our free call numbers are displayed.
Or you can email us using this
Material Safety Data Sheet
Frequently Asked Questions
and Environmental Safety
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