REVERSE OSMOSISPerhaps the most puzzling of all results are low removal rates for RO. Studies have indicated that size, charge, and hydrophobicity of the associated compounds play the strongest roles in influencing removal rates. Moreover, feed water temperature plays a minor role.
MICROPLASTIC REMOVAL RATES
SAND FILTRATION* Sand filtration data is incomplete
due in part to the many variations
of sand filtration types/designs.
MBRsWhile MBRs are indicated for a higher removal rate than some other technologies, challenges arise with impacts to reversible and slight irreversible membrane fouling due to microplastics.
NOTE: A wide range of different materials, additives, and degrees of weathering, e.g., fragility of the environmental particles, provide greater difficulty in comparing laboratory studies to actual influent microplastic qualities.
REMOVAL RATESResearch is still in the earliest stages for determining the removal rate of various technologies for microplastics. Not all studies quantify removal rates for all particle size ranges, therefore, studies on the same technology may lead to different results when quantifying dramatically different size ranges.
Some treatment types or aged infrastructure may increase microplastic levels.
OXIDATIONStudies often indicate an increase in microplastic quantities following oxidation. This could be due to the embrittlement of softer plastic types like microfibers and/or breakdown caused by shear force. This increase has been predominantly shown in small size ranges.