Journal of Environmental Treatment Techniques  
2021, Volume 9, Issue 1, Pages: 289-296  
J. Environ. Treat. Tech.  
ISSN: 2309-1185  
Journal web link:  
Removal of TDS and TSS from Industrial  
Wastewater using Fly Ash  
Nehal M. Ashour , Mohamed Bassyouni 2, 3*, Mamdouh Y. Saleh 1  
Sanitary and Environmental Engineering, Department of Civil Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Port Said University, Port Said 42526, Egypt  
Department of Chemical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Port Said University, Port Said 42526, Egypt  
Materials Science Program, University of Science and Technology, Zewail City of Science and Technology, October Gardens, 6th of October, Giza 12578,  
Received: 15/09/2020  
Accepted: 17/11/2020  
Published: 20/03/2021  
Fly ash is one of the most abundant waste materials; its major components make it a potential agent for the adsorption of pollutants  
contaminants in water and wastewaters. In this study, fly ash obtained from burning of mazut was dried and sieved into different fractions  
600, 300, 150, 75µm). A pilot plant with an industrial discharge flow of 200L/hr was designed for reducing total Dissolved Solids (TDS),  
total suspended solids (TSS), conductivity and pH from industrial wastewater. The concentrations of (TDS), (TSS), conductivity and pH in  
industrial discharge flow had an average range of 80000, 750, 120000 mg/L and 13 respectively. The optimization of the treatment process  
using 5, 8, 12, 15 g/L fly ash dosage had succeeded in improving the removal efficiency of (TDS), (TSS), conductivity and pH to 90%,  
2.3%, 90% and 93.5% respectively.  
Keywords: Adsorbent; Wastewater; Fly ash, Low cost  
properties of fly ash differ according to the type of coal from  
which this ash was issued, as there are four different types of coal  
whose properties depend on the chemical composition,  
temperature, ash content and the origin of geological coal.  
Lignite, anthracite, sub-bituminous and bituminous are the most  
common type of coal. The composition of fly ash from burning  
bituminous is mostly calcium, magnesium and silica.  
Industry contributes to the emission of large quantities of  
pollutants and increases the concentration of elements that cause  
water pollution and that harm living organisms [1]. Several  
methods are applied for the treatment of wastewater and water [2-  
0]. Adsorption is considered the most flexible technique among  
many methods used for the treatment of water and waste water.  
Scientists have found that the most used material for water and  
wastewater treatment is active carbon because it is highly  
effective for adsorption. [11]. If it is possible to convert some  
solid waste and agricultural waste into valuable applications such  
as absorbent materials used in treating sewage and water from  
pollutants, then it is one of the important and beneficial uses of  
that waste [12]. Given the solid waste as low-cost adsorbents can  
be used, emission controls can have a double-fold benefit. First,  
the amount of waste materials might be partially reduced, and  
second, if created, the low cost adsorbent might minimize  
wastewater pollution at economic cost. In order to extract  
different types of contaminants from water and wastewater,  
various industrial waste such as slag, fly ash, sludge and red mud  
are investigated as adsorbents.  
Fly ash contains boron, selenium, manganese, arsenic,  
chromium, vanadium, sodium and cadmium in abundant  
Figure 1: Lignite, anthracite coal and bituminous Chemical composition  
2 3 3 2 3 2 2 2  
quantities [13]. Fe O ,SO , CaO, Al O , MgO, Na O, SiO , TiO ,  
and K O are the most important constituents of fly ash[14]. The  
Corresponding author: Mohamed Bassyouni, (a) Department of Chemical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Port Said University, Port  
Said 42526, Egypt and (b) Materials Science Program, University of Science and Technology, Zewail City of Science and Technology,  
October Gardens, 6th of October, Giza 12578, Egypt. E-mail: ; Tel.: +2-011-596-75357  
Journal of Environmental Treatment Techniques  
2021, Volume 9, Issue 1, Pages: 289-296  
The extent to which fly ash contains calcium, silica, ammonia,  
and iron oxide defines the fly ash category, and they are two class  
classes f and c, as it is the main difference between the two  
categories [15-16]. Fig. 1 displays the chemical composition of  
anthracite, bituminous, and lignite ash from coal. Fly ash can be  
used to separate heavy metals from wastewater as an adsorption  
method. [17-20]. The adsorption processes can be regulated using  
mass transfer, particle diffusion, chemical reactions and methods  
amounts of each negative and positive charge remain equivalent.  
This means that while water conductivity increases with added  
ions, electrically neutral conductivity remains [40]. pH is similar  
to temperature; each of them has a specific value. The pH value  
ranges from 0 to 14. As the number 7 expresses that water is  
neutral. The lower the number than 7 is an indication of the acidity  
of the water, and the higher the number than 7, the more alkaline  
the water is [41, 42]. The reason for the decrease in the pH below  
number 7 is due to the presence of hydrogen ions and the reason  
for the increase in the pH above number 7 due to the presence of  
hydroxyl ions. In neutral waters, the concentration of both  
21]. The key components in fly ash are SiO and Al O , where  
2 2 3  
SiO material is more susceptible to heavy metal adsorption  
because of complex lone pair hybridization [22] or lone pair  
electron. Because of its high removal of different contaminants,  
such as many heavy metal elements, fly ash has demonstrated to  
scientists its high efficacy in the treatment of industrial and waste  
water, and scientists are currently looking to use effective  
methods to enhance the surface properties of fly ash to make it  
more capable and effective in removing pollutants. Chemical  
treatments using acid or alkali as well as physical methods such  
as laser, ultrasonic, microwave, or plasma therapy are among  
these methods. The mazut fly ash (MFA) is a combustion product  
produced by the burning of mazut at power stations. This fuel is  
a heavy residual oil of the petroleum refineries distillation or  
cracking units. MFA is obtained from flue gas purification  
machines. MFA is generally known as toxic waste; however,  
certain studies indicate that MFA inorganic matter can be of  
industrial value to recover useful elements, including V and Ni  
hydrogen and hydroxyl ions is 10 M. For example, if the  
hydrogen concentration increases, the hydroxyl concentration  
decreases with it, and vice versa, so that their sum does not exceed  
10 [43]. pH is very important for the life of living things in the  
water, as all of them will die if the pH drops or increases to a high  
degree. The pH has an effect on the presence of heavy and toxic  
metals in the water and their solubility in it. The best pH number  
suitable for living organisms in the water ranges between 6.5 and  
9 [44-47].  
Materials and Methods  
.1 Aim of Study  
Industries in developed countries have seen rapid growth in  
recent years. These factories discharge wastewater that carries  
high levels of dissolved solids and demand for chemical oxygen.  
These effluents, which comply with the regulations imposed on  
industrial sectors, should be handled for safe disposal. This  
research aims to improve the efficiency of TSS, TDS,  
Conductivity and pH removal of industrial wastewater by adding  
an inexpensive adsorbent such as fly ash.  
[2228]. In fact, the carbonaceous fraction of MFA can be used  
as a black pigment for cementitious content production [29].  
The composite composition of Total Dissolved Solids (TDS)  
is a mixture of both organic and inorganic compounds in a  
suspended chemical, ionized or micro-granular (colloidal) form.  
In general, the practical meaning is that the solids (often  
abbreviated TDS) must be low enough to withstand filtration by  
a two micrometer sieve size [30]. Complete hardness, organic  
ions, bicarbonate, alkalinity, sulphate, sodium, calcium, nitrate,  
magnesium, phosphate, iron, chloride and carbonate can be used.  
For aquatic life, a certain level of those ions is necessary in water.  
Changes in concentrations of TDS can be harmful. The flow of  
water into and out of an organism's cells is determined by water  
density. In industrial wastewater, steel production,  
pharmaceutical manufacturing, mining activities, oil and gas  
exploration, and food processing facilities are major sources of  
TDS. Furthermore, salts used for road deicing may make a major  
contribution to the charging of water sources by TDS.  
Concentrations of TDS in water vary in various geographical  
regions due to varying mineral solubility. Total solids values  
range between 30, 65 and 195: 1100 mg/l for water in contact with  
granite, rocky areas and sedimentary areas. [31-34]. The  
concentration of ions in the water gives it the ability to pass