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ASCORBIC ACID REDUCTION OF RESIDUAL ACTIVE CHLORINE IN POTABLE WATER PRIOR TO HALOCARBOXYLATE DETERMINATION

JOURNAL OF ENVIRONMENTAL MONITORING 2 (3): 253-256 2000

Urbansky ET, Freeman DM, Rubio FJ
US EPA, Off Res & Dev, Natl Rick Management Res Lab, Water Supply & Water Resources Div, Cincinnati, OH 45268 USA

Abstract:
In studies on the formation of disinfection byproducts (DBPs), it is necessary to scavenge residual active (oxidizing) chlorine in order to rx the chlorination byproducts (such as haloethanoates) at a point in time. Such research projects often have distinct needs from requirements for regulatory compliance monitoring. Thus, methods designed for compliance monitoring are not always directly applicable, but must be adapted. This research describes an adaptation of EPA Method 552 in which ascorbic acid treatment is shown to be a satisfactory means for reducing residual oxidizing chlorine, i.e., HOCl, ClO-, and Cl-2, prior to determining concentrations of halocarboxylates. Ascorbic acid rapidly reduces oxidizing chlorine compounds, and it has the advantage of producing inorganic halides and dehydroascorbic acid as opposed to halogenated organic molecules as byproducts. In deionized water and a sample of chlorinated tap water, systematic biases relative to strict adherence to Method 552 were precise and could be corrected for using similarly treated standards and analyte-fortified (spiked) samples. This was demonstrated for the quantitation of chloroethanoate, bromoethanoate, 2,2-dichloropropanoate (dalapon), trichloroethanoate, bromochloroethanoate, and bromodichloroethanoate when extracted, as the acids, into tert-butyl methyl ether (MTBE) and esterified with diazomethane prior to gas chromatography with electron capture detection (GC-ECD). Recoveries for chloroethanoate, bromoethanoate, dalapon, dichloroethanoate, trichloroethanoate, bromochloroethanoate, bromodichloroethanoate, dibromoethanoate, and 2-bromopropanoate at concentrations near the lower limit of detection were acceptable. Ascorbic acid reduction appears to be the best option presently available when there is a need to quench residual oxidants fast in a DBP formation study without generating other halospecies but must be implemented cautiously to ensure no untoward interactions in the matrix.




ASCORBIC ACID REDUCTION OF ACTIVE CHLORINE PRIOR TO DETERMINE AMES MUTAGENICITY OF CHLORINATED NATURAL ORGANIC MATTER (NOM)
JOURNAL OF ENVIRONMENTAL MONITORING 2 (3): 253-256 2000

Urbansky ET, Schenck KM
US EPA, Off Res & Dev, Natl Rick Management Res Lab, Water Supply & Water Resources Div, Cincinnati, OH 45268 USA

Abstract:


Many potable water disinfection byproducts (DBPs) that result from the reaction of natural organic matter (NOM) with oxidizing chlorine are known or suspected to be carcinogenic and mutagenic. The Ames assay is routinely used to assess an overall level of mutagenicity for all compounds in samples from potable water supplies or laboratory studies of DBP formation. Reduction of oxidizing disinfectants is required since these compounds can kill the bacteria or react with the agar, producing chlorinated byproducts. When mutagens are collected by passing potable water through adsorbing resins, active chlorine compounds react with the resin, producing undesirable mutagenic artifacts. The bioanalytical and chemoanalytical needs of drinking water DBP studies required a suitable reductant. Many of the candidate compounds failed to meet those needs, including 2,4-hexadienoic (sorbic) acid, 2,4-pentanedione (acetylacetone), 2-butenoic (crotonic) acid, 2-butenedioic (maleic and fumaric) acids and buten-2-ol (crotyl alcohol). Candidates were rejected if they (1) reacted too slowly with active chlorine, (2) formed mutagenic byproducts, or (3) interfered in the quantitation of known chlorination DBPs. L-Ascorbic acid reacts rapidly and stoichiometrically with active chlorine and has limited interactions with halogenated DBPs. In this work, we found no interference from L-ascorbic acid or its oxidation product (dehydroascorbic acid) in mutagenicity assays of chlorinated NOM using Salmonella typhimurium TA100, with or without metabolic activation (S9). This was demonstrated for both aqueous solutions of chlorinated NOM and concentrates derived from the involatile, ether-extractable chlorinated byproducts of those solutions.
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