Uptake of heavy metals by microorganisms: An experimental approach

Omar Chaalal, Adulrazag Y. Zekri, Rafiq Islam

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle

25 Citations (Scopus)


Contamination in drinking water is the most common form of environmental problems encountered in water resources management. Some contaminants, present accidentally in drinking water, are very difficult to remove, such as heavy elements that are products of industrial waste. Lead is one of the most difficult-to-remove elements. This paper proposes a novel process for removal of lead compounds contaminants from water. The proposed method shows great efficiency. The technique uses thermophilic bacteria found in the United Arab Emirates near Al-Ain town located in Abu-Dhabi Emirates. These bacteria were isolated and used in a reactor coupled with a membrane system. The bacteria, the stirrer and the membrane housed in the reactor are arranged in a distinctive way to form the novel bio-stabilization process proposed in this research. This proposed technique could be used at low cost and with great confidence in the purification of drinking water. The system was found to be adequate for concentrations of lead in the range of 5-40 ppm. At the end of the operation the lead concentration reaches the level allowed by the World Health Organization regulations.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages14
Specialist publicationEnergy Sources
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2005


  • Bioremediation
  • Lead
  • Membrane reactor
  • Thermophilic bacteria

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemical Engineering
  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology


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