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Thread: Response to Cryptosporidium Post

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    Response to Cryptosporidium Post

    This thread is in response to this post.

    Yes, you are correct, though the CDC link I gave said 20 ppm FC for at least 12.75 hours, but amounts to the same thing (and the chart they show has 10 ppm FC for 25.5 hours similar to your calculation). The problem is that these are CT values WITHOUT CYA. With CYA in the water, it's not practical to get to the very high FC levels needed for equivalent disinfection rates. At 30 ppm CYA, you'd have to raise the FC to 37.5 ppm FC to be equivalent to 10 ppm FC with no CYA (it just works out that way -- at a pH near 7.5 so you'd better lower the pH before adding that much chlorine).

    The CDC link (repeated again here) talks about this CYA limitation as follows:

    Crypto CT values are based on the inactivation of 99.9% of oocysts. Laboratory studies indicate that this level of Crypto inactivation cannot be reached in the presence of 50 ppm chlorine stabilizer,*** even after 24 hours at 40 ppm free chlorine, pH 6.5 at a temperature of about 77°F (25°C).

    It is pretty obvious that the CDC is not aware of the chlorine/CYA relationship in detail because a straightforward calculation using my spreadsheet shows that 40 ppm FC with 50 ppm CYA at a pH of 6.5 and temperature of 77F is technically equivalent (in hypochlorous acid concentration which is the disinfecting form of chlorine) to 4.8 ppm FC with no CYA at a pH of 7.5. To be equivalent to 10.625 ppm FC for 24 hours (to get the 15,300 CT), you would need 51 ppm FC with 50 ppm CYA at a pH of 6.5 or 57 ppm FC with 50 ppm CYA at a pH of 7.5. This clearly becomes impractical at high CYA levels and even at lower 30 ppm CYA levels raising the FC to 38.4 ppm FC and holding it there for 24 hours isn't practical.

    Generally speaking, I wouldn't worry about Crypto in a residential pool. As for what commercial/public pools can do, they are in a tough position. There currently is no method they can use that will clear the pool of Crypto in any reasonable timeframe. UV will kill Crypto, but it takes 4.6 turnovers (with perfect circulation) to have 99% of the water go through the UV system. Chlorine Dioxide is at least 10 times as effective as chlorine and does not get reduced in effectiveness by CYA and could potentially be created in the pool by addition of sodium chlorite to produce just 2 ppm over 12 hours for 99.9% inactivation of Crypto, but the EPA won't allow this without studies that would cost $4+ million showing that the chlorate and chlorite byproduct concentrations would be safe (this is part of what I learned talking to people at the NEHA conference this past week).

    Richard
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
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    Re: Response to Cryptosporidium Post

    Very nice summary. Crypto deactivation in commercial pools is quite the problem these days for precisely the reasons you stated. The problem is, most operators/owners don't realize it. I think that chlorine dioxide may indeed be the long term solution but there's not much business incentive for the chlorine dioxide equipment manufacturers (or the tablet guys) to fund that kind of study for such a finite market.
    21' Leslies Beachland Ag Pool, 10,000 gallons, professionally installed (best money I ever spent) Hayward 16" sand filter w/Pentair two speed pump Fafco 4x20 solar heater,Aqua Trol RJ. Borates added. Hard plumbed.

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    Re: Response to Cryptosporidium Post

    Richard,

    I have read that an effective way to remove Crypto is to use the filtration system whilst maintaining higher than normal HOCl levels. IE raise your FC to 40% of CYA and then use a flocculant to bind to the Crypto, run your pumps for about 24 hours and then do a through backwash.

    I was just wondering your thought's on this process. 24 hours seems an awfully short time to remove Crypto from an outside pool to me.

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    Re: Response to Cryptosporidium Post

    Do you have a link to what you have read?

    Just raising the chlorine level to a shock level of 40% of the CYA level is practically useless against Crypto. The equivalent FC with no CYA at this level is only 0.6 ppm so with the 15,300 CT value for Crypto this would be 15300/0.6/60/24 = 17.7 days for a 99.9% inactivation. The CDC recommendation is at least 20 ppm FC with no CYA for 12.75 hours or equivalently 10 ppm FC with no CYA for 25.5 hours. To achieve this latter equivalent with CYA in the water one needs to raise the FC to roughly 10 ppm more than the CYA level. If the CYA level is high, this becomes impractical.

    The filtration using a flocculant/coagulant to capture the oocysts in the filter and then backwashing to remove them will probably work to some extent but it's unclear as to the precise level of reduction that would be achieved. Even if there were 100% removal for passing through the filter in this situation, it still takes multiple turnovers since one turnover only filters 63% of the water, two turnovers filters 86%, three turnovers filters 95%, four turnovers filters 98%, five turnovers filters 99%, and it takes almost 7 turnovers to filter 99.9%. And this all assumed perfect mixing and circulation while in reality actual numbers are lower.

    Ozone and UV systems are effective at killing Crypto, but have the same issues of needing good circulation and multiple turnovers. Since a relatively small amount of chlorine dioxide will kill Crypto in the bulk pool water overnight, I think that a periodic (weekly?) dosing would at least limit the exposure time if there are undetected fecal accidents and would also be viable after a known fecal accident and for pools that have CYA without resorting to excessive superchlorination. Unfortunately, there doesn't seem to be any manufacturer willing to step up to pay for the studies to get EPA approvals for this nor to do some studies to make sure it doesn't cause more problems than it solves.

    There was a recent poster paper presented at the World Aquatic Health Conference (WAHC) last year from the CDC on measuring kill times for the more chlorine resistant bacteria Staphylococcus aureus and with the protozoan oocyst Cryptosporidium parvum. There were detailed graphs for the bacteria measurements and I created a model to account for the delay of chlorine oxidizing the thicker cell wall before disinfection/inactivation could occur. I also accounted for disinfectant demand. The model fit the data very well and then I ran into this paper that takes a different modeling approach. Though the resulting formulas are a bit different, they end up fitting each other almost identically for the range of log reductions and times in the experiment. I also fit the actual inactivation time data at a fixed log reduction to a model where the chlorine bound to CYA had 1/100th the oxidation rate of hypochlorous acid (which I got from this paper a while ago) and the data almost perfectly fit. I sent all of this to the CDC and they thanked me for my interest and for the info, but we'll see if anything comes of it.

    In case anyone is interested in the formulas, their paper's formula and the one I came up with have the following forms where PHI is the cumulative distribution function (CDF) of the standard normal distribution and the constants a,b and a',b' (and "k" in the disinfectant demand formula) are fitted to the experimental data:

    the paper: log10 reduction = PHI( (a - b*t)/sqrt(b*t) )
    mine: log10 reduction = PHI( a’ - b'*ln(t) )

    To account for disinfectant demand, the "t" time variable is replaced with -(1/k)*exp(-kt) + (1/k) and though technically this is a C*t formula, the constant "C" gets combined with the other constants implicitly on "t" in the above formulas (i.e. "b" in the paper's formula and "a'" in my formula since ln(x*y) = ln(x) + ln(y)).
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
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    Re: Response to Cryptosporidium Post

    I raised the FC level on my pool to over 50ppm when I drained the pool last summer (closer to 60 actually), you need to use Cal Hypo to do it...but its not impractical. Of course I had low CH levels so it wasn't a big problem, just pointing out its not that hard to do...unless your hauling jugs!
    55 Kilolitre in-ground 18'X36' vinyl lined kidney shape, 1HP pump, Jacuzzi 250lb sand filter, RayPak Delta T 200K BTU natural gas heater. New PoolWerks "Blue Diffusion" liner on May 26th-2011
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    Re: Response to Cryptosporidium Post

    Yeah, impractical is a bit harsh -- I probably should have said inconvenient or more expensive (since it's 3 or 4 times more chlorine than would be needed if there were no CYA in the water). For a commercial/public pool hopefully they don't have the CYA that high to begin with, probably 20 or 30 ppm, so yes they could raise the FC higher and then probably have to add a chlorine neutralizer when they are done if they want to get the FC down faster to reopen the pool.

    You say you need to use Cal-Hypo to do it but why is that? Is it just to have less weight to carry than with chlorinating liquid? Even 50 ppm FC added by Cal-Hypo only increases CH by around 35 ppm so isn't a big deal.
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
    12 Fafco solar panels; Purex Triton PowerMax 250 natural gas heater (200,000 BTU/hr output); automatic electric pool safety cover; 4-wheel pressure-side "The Pool Cleaner"

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    Re: Response to Cryptosporidium Post

    Hi Richard,

    Sorry but I cannot remember where I read that information.

    But basically what I read with the exception of raising the FC is correct then.. Providing you do at least 7 turnovers.

    Raising FC for prolonged periods of time is not a problem for me either as I use automatic dosing pumps for putting chlorine into the water, all my pumps are 6 litre per hour pumps so are able to handle any and all situations that I come across plus I use 80 litre containers which is more than enough for a few days worth of chlorine in 230,000 litre pools.

    Thanks again for your informative reply.

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    4JawChuck's Avatar
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    Re: Response to Cryptosporidium Post

    Quote Originally Posted by chem geek
    Yeah, impractical is a bit harsh -- I probably should have said inconvenient or more expensive (since it's 3 or 4 times more chlorine than would be needed if there were no CYA in the water). For a commercial/public pool hopefully they don't have the CYA that high to begin with, probably 20 or 30 ppm, so yes they could raise the FC higher and then probably have to add a chlorine neutralizer when they are done if they want to get the FC down faster to reopen the pool.

    You say you need to use Cal-Hypo to do it but why is that? Is it just to have less weight to carry than with chlorinating liquid? Even 50 ppm FC added by Cal-Hypo only increases CH by around 35 ppm so isn't a big deal.
    My CYA level was close to 100 ppm as I was exchanging water to bring it down when the algae hit, I had a new tub of Cal Hypo on hand and only a few jugs of Sodium Hypo...getting the FC up high enough for that CYA level would have required a trip to the store and removing the middle seat from the van to get enough room for all those jugs. Cal Hypo saved me that day, I keep a tub around at all times just in case.

    I am lucky, our potable water is close to 50 CH so using Cal Hypo from time to time is not a big deal.
    55 Kilolitre in-ground 18'X36' vinyl lined kidney shape, 1HP pump, Jacuzzi 250lb sand filter, RayPak Delta T 200K BTU natural gas heater. New PoolWerks "Blue Diffusion" liner on May 26th-2011
    Avatar is my pool!

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