In practice, direct current (DC) is used in an electrocoagulation processes. In this case, an impermeable oxide layer may form on the cathode as well as corrosion formation on the anode due to oxidation. This prevents the effective current transfer between the anode and cathode, so the efficiency of electrocoagulation processes declines. These disadvantages of DC have been diminished by adopting alternating current (AC) in electrocoagulation processes. The main objective of this study is to investigate the effects of AC and DC on the removal of iron from water using zinc as anode and cathode. The results showed that the optimum removal efficiency of 99.6% and 99.1% with the energy consumption of 0.625 and 0.991 kWh kL−1 was achieved at a current density of 0.06 A dm−2, at pH of 7.0 using AC and DC, respectively. For both AC and DC, the adsorption of iron was preferably fitting Langmuir adsorption isotherm, the adsorption process follows second order kinetics and the temperature studies showed that adsorption was exothermic and spontaneous in nature. © 2011 Canadian Society for Chemical Engineering
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