Evaluation of ultrafiltration cartridges for a water sampling apparatus


Patricia M. Holowecky, Battelle, 505 King Avenue, Columbus, OH 43201, USA. E-mail: holoweckyp@battelle.org


Aims:  To determine the efficiency of various ultrafiltration cartridges (UFC) in concentrating test micro-organisms from drinking water.

Methods and Results:  Replicate drinking water samples from three potable water supplies were dosed with Bacillus anthracis Sterne, Francisella tularensis LVS, Yersinia pestis CO92, bacteriophages MS2 and phi-X174, and Cryptosporidium parvum. The test micro-organisms were dosed together in 100 l of water, which was then recirculated through one of five different UFC until the retentate volume was reduced to c. 500 ml. The micro-organisms were assayed before and after ultrafiltration concentration and per cent recoveries were calculated. There were nine statistically significant differences among pairs of filters out of a possible 180 different combinations of UFC, test micro-organisms, and water types.

Conclusions:  No filter consistently performed better or worse than the others for each test micro-organism in all water samples tested.

Significance and Impact of the Study:  This study provides performance data on the ability of several different UFC to concentrate a panel of test micro-organisms from three sources of potable water. Water utilities and first responders may use these data when selecting UFC for use in emergency response protocols. This study also provides additional data as to the efficacy of ultrafiltration for recovering bacteria, virus-like particles, and protozoan oocysts from water samples.