Mineralizing urban net-zero water treatment: Phase II field results and design recommendations

Water Res. 2016 Nov 15;105:496-506. doi: 10.1016/j.watres.2016.09.005. Epub 2016 Sep 8.


Net-zero water (NZW) systems, or water management systems achieving high recycling rates and low residuals generation so as to avoid water import and export, can also conserve energy used to heat and convey water, while economically restoring local eco-hydrology. However, design and operating experience are extremely limited. The objective of this paper is to present the results of the second phase of operation of an advanced oxidation-based NZW pilot system designed, constructed, and operated for a period of two years, serving an occupied four-person apartment. System water was monitored, either continuously or thrice daily, for routine water quality parameters, minerals, and MicroTox® in-vitro toxicity, and intermittently for somatic and male-specific coliphage, adenovirus, Cryptosporidium, Giardia, emerging organic constituents (non-quantitative), and the Florida drinking water standards. All 115 drinking water standards with the exception of bromate were met in this phase. Neither virus nor protozoa were detected in the treated water, with the exception of measurement of adenovirus genome copies attributed to accumulation of inactive genetic material in hydraulic dead zones. Chemical oxygen demand was mineralized to <0.7 mg/L, and all but six of 1006 emerging organic constituents analyzed were either undetected or removed >90% in treatment. Total dissolved solids were maintained at ∼500 mg/L at steady state, partially through aerated aluminum electrocoagulation. Bromate accumulation is projected to be controlled by aluminum electrocoagulation with separate disposal of backwash water. Further development of such systems and their automated/remote process control systems is recommended.

Keywords: Advanced oxidation; Net-zero; Potable water reuse.

MeSH terms

  • Biological Oxygen Demand Analysis*
  • Mineral Waters
  • Recycling
  • Water Purification*
  • Water Quality


  • Mineral Waters