Physico-chemical characterization of groundwater of Kaltungo, Gombe state, Nigeria and treatment for flouride removal
Physico-chemical characteristics of Kaltungo groundwater were determined for a period of 12 months. The physical characteristics include odour, colour, taste, temperature, turbidity and TDS; while conductivity, pH, chloride, iron, copper, lead, zinc, fluoride, cadmium, nitrates, TH, total alkalinity (TA) and fluoride were the chemical characteristics. Nine water samples, three from three hand dug wells and six from six boreholes were taken monthly for the period. This study was undertaken because the people of Kaltungo town depend on groundwater from hand dug wells and boreholes for their water needs and children who grow up in the town during the ages of teething end up having mottled teeth. The results showed that the physical parameters were below their maximum limits, except temperature that had a mean of 29.7°C, which was still within ambient temperature. Most of the chemical parameters were below the recommended maximum limits except Iron and fluoride which had mean monthly values of 0.9mg/l and 1.66mg/l as against 0.3mg/l and 1.5mg/l respectively. Treatments for flouride removal carried out with alum, bone charcoal and Moringa olifera seeds showed that fluoride concentrations in water was reduced when treated with dosages ≥ 10g/l of raw water by between 15% and 43% reduction. Kaltungo groundwater should be treated for fluoride removal before consumption to avert teeth mottling.
Keywords: Characteristics, fluoride, groundwater, teeth mottling, treatment